Dietary restriction induced longevity is mediated by nuclear receptor NHR-62 in Caenorhabditis elegans

PLoS Genet. 2013;9(7):e1003651. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1003651. Epub 2013 Jul 25.


Dietary restriction (DR) extends lifespan in a wide variety of species, yet the underlying mechanisms are not well understood. Here we show that the Caenorhabditis elegans HNF4α-related nuclear hormone receptor NHR-62 is required for metabolic and physiologic responses associated with DR-induced longevity. nhr-62 mediates the longevity of eat-2 mutants, a genetic mimetic of dietary restriction, and blunts the longevity response of DR induced by bacterial food dilution at low nutrient levels. Metabolic changes associated with DR, including decreased Oil Red O staining, decreased triglyceride levels, and increased autophagy are partly reversed by mutation of nhr-62. Additionally, the DR fatty acid profile is altered in nhr-62 mutants. Expression profiles reveal that several hundred genes induced by DR depend on the activity of NHR-62, including a putative lipase required for the DR response. This study provides critical evidence of nuclear hormone receptor regulation of the DR longevity response, suggesting hormonal and metabolic control of life span.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autophagy
  • Caenorhabditis elegans / genetics*
  • Caenorhabditis elegans / physiology
  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins / genetics*
  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins / metabolism
  • Caloric Restriction*
  • Fatty Acids / metabolism
  • Hepatocyte Nuclear Factor 4 / genetics*
  • Hepatocyte Nuclear Factor 4 / metabolism
  • Longevity / genetics*
  • Mutation
  • Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear / genetics*
  • Signal Transduction


  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins
  • Fatty Acids
  • Hepatocyte Nuclear Factor 4
  • NHR-62 protein, C elegans
  • Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear