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SirT1 protein presence vital to regulate metabolism, but exercise-dietary antioxidant combination can help diabetic and obese people even when absent: new study

TORONTO, January 23, 2013: If you feel lack of energy, it could be due to deficiency in sirtuin-1 ((SirT1) — the protein that plays an important role in regulating the metabolism of the body, according to a new study by York University researchers.

“Mitochondria must function well to generate the energy for muscle contraction and to regulate normal metabolism in the whole body. Poor fat breakdown and impaired carbohydrate metabolism leading to insulin-resistant conditions like obesity and Type 2 diabetes can be caused by the absence of SirT1, resulting in lower mitochondrial content and poor mitochondrial function,” explains lead researcher Professor David A Hood, Canada Research Chair in Cell Physiology at the School of Kinesiology and Health Director at the Muscle Health Research Centre at York U.

But the good news is that regular exercising can help improve mitochondrial content in the muscle, even when SirT1 is absent, reveals the study — SirT1-mediated effects on mitochondrial biogenesis — published in this week’s edition of the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

The study also investigated the therapeutic potential of Resveratrol (RSV), an antioxidant compound commonly found in red wine and an activator of the protein. The results suggest that regular exercise along with dietary RSV can have beneficial effects on Type 2 diabetics and obese people.

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Media Contact:
Gloria Suhasini, York University Media Relations, 416 736 2100 ext. 22094, suhasini@yorku.ca