Joint U.S.-Italy Symposium on Protein Metabolism in Aging; Pisa, April 1989
Harold Segal Principal Investigator
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This award will support a collaborative workshop between a group of U.S. researchers headed by Professors Darrell Doyle and Morton Rothstein of SUNY at Buffalo, and a similar group of Italian researchers headed by Professors E. Bergamini and P. L. Ipata of the University of Pisa on the subject of protein metabolism in aging. Alterations of protein metabolism represent an important facet of the aging process. While it is known that a number of changes take place, the mechanisms behind these changes are poorly defined. For example, cell-free protein synthesizing systems from various tissues of old animals function less effectively than those from equivalent young preparations with highly significant differences. More recent work has demonstrated that old rat liver ribosomes are deficient in a protein factor present in young ribosomes. On a broader scale, protein turnover has been shown to slow substantially with age, although the reasons are obscure. Alterations in enzyme structure with age is an area that can be presumed to lead to physiological consequences also. Modifications of hormone receptors would also be expected to play a role in regulation of metabolism regulation. These are a few examples of a variety of current and ongoing investigations related to aging and protein changes. The purpose of convening the proposed meeting is to increase our understanding of what is known about protein structure, regulation, and metabolism as it relates to aging. While there have been other meetings related to protein turnover, none so far has focused on age-related changes in protein structure and metabolism, together with selected topics in important related areas. Giving the aging population in the U.S. this topic is one of increasing interest for basic research. A workshop getting together researchers in the U.S. with leading researchers in Italy, where a strong focus on aging research has developed, has the potential to lead to successful exchange of information and to future collaborative projects in this important area.