Every organism must adapt and respond appropriately to the source of nutrients available in its environment. Different mechanisms and pathways are involved in detecting the intracellular and extracellular levels of macronutrients including amino acids. Detection of amino acids in food sources is provided by taste cells expressing T1R1 and T1R3 type receptors. Additionally, cells of the intestine, pancreas or heart sense amino acids extracellularly. Neuronal and hormonal regulation integrates and coordinates the signals at the organismal level. Amino acid-sensitive mechanisms including GCN2 protein, mTOR and LYNUS machinery adjust cellular process according to the availability of specific amino acids. Triggering these mechanisms by genetic manipulations or by external manipulations with diets has a significant impact on lifespan. In model organisms, the restriction of protein or specific amino acids within the diet leads to lifespan-extending effects. However, the translation of results from model organisms to application in humans has to take into account lifestyle, psychology, social aspects and the possibility to choose what to eat and how it is cooked.

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Experimental Gerontology
Department of Biology

Lushchak, O. (Oleh), Strilbytska, O.M. (Olha M.), Yurkevych, I. (Ihor), Vaiserman, A.M. (Alexander M.), & Storey, K. (2019). Implications of amino acid sensing and dietary protein to the aging process. Experimental Gerontology (Vol. 115, pp. 69–78). doi:10.1016/j.exger.2018.11.021