Dr Troy Merry
University of Auckland
Targeting P13 to promote healthy ageing
36 months

Lay summary

New Zealanders are now living on average 10 years longer than we did in 1980. Aging is associated with an increased incidence of chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cancers, neurodegenerative and heart diseases. Unfortunately, the age of onset of these diseases has not substantially increased, meaning that we are living longer in an unhealthy state. As a consequence our quality of life is reduced and dependence on health care services is increased. The most effective intervention to delay the development of age-associated diseases is a chronic reduction in food intake. This is thought to reduce signals sent by the hormone insulin following a meal, and as a result improve our metabolism and resistance to stress. In this proposal we will determine whether a drug that blocks aspects of insulin signalling can effectively mimic food restriction and improve our metabolism and health in old age.

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