Influences of aging and caloric restriction on the transcriptional profile of skeletal muscle from rhesus monkeys

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2001 Apr 24;98(9):5093-8. doi: 10.1073/pnas.081061898. Epub 2001 Apr 17.


In laboratory rodents, caloric restriction (CR) retards several age-dependent physiological and biochemical changes in skeletal muscle, including increased steady-state levels of oxidative damage to lipids, DNA, and proteins. We have previously used high-density oligonucleotide arrays to show that CR can prevent or delay most of the major age-related transcriptional alterations in the gastrocnemius muscle of C57BL/6 mice. Here we report the effects of aging and adult-onset CR on the gene expression profile of 7,070 genes in the vastus lateralis muscle from rhesus monkeys. Gene expression analysis of aged rhesus monkeys (mean age of 26 years) was compared with that of young animals (mean age of 8 years). Aging resulted in a selective up-regulation of transcripts involved in inflammation and oxidative stress, and a down-regulation of genes involved in mitochondrial electron transport and oxidative phosphorylation. Middle-aged monkeys (mean age of 20 years) subjected to CR since early adulthood (mean age of 11 years) were studied to determine the gene expression profile induced by CR. CR resulted in an up-regulation of cytoskeletal protein-encoding genes, and also a decrease in the expression of genes involved in mitochondrial bioenergetics. Surprisingly, we did not observe any evidence for an inhibitory effect of adult-onset CR on age-related changes in gene expression. These results indicate that the induction of an oxidative stress-induced transcriptional response may be a common feature of aging in skeletal muscle of rodents and primates, but the extent to which CR modifies these responses may be species-specific.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aging / genetics*
  • Aging / physiology
  • Animals
  • Down-Regulation
  • Electron Transport / genetics
  • Energy Intake / genetics
  • Food Deprivation / physiology*
  • Gene Expression Profiling*
  • Humans
  • Macaca mulatta / genetics*
  • Macaca mulatta / physiology*
  • Male
  • Muscle, Skeletal / metabolism*
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Oxidative Phosphorylation
  • Oxidative Stress / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Transcription, Genetic* / genetics
  • Up-Regulation


  • RNA, Messenger