Protein and amino acid restriction, aging and disease: from yeast to humans

Trends Endocrinol Metab. 2014 Nov;25(11):558-66. doi: 10.1016/j.tem.2014.07.002. Epub 2014 Aug 19.


Many of the effects of dietary restriction (DR) on longevity and health span in model organisms have been linked to reduced protein and amino acid (AA) intake and the stimulation of specific nutrient signaling pathways. Studies in yeast have shown that addition of serine, threonine, and valine in media promotes cellular sensitization and aging by activating different but connected pathways. Protein or essential AA restriction extends both lifespan and healthspan in rodent models. In humans, protein restriction (PR) has been associated with reduced cancer, diabetes, and overall mortality. Thus, interventions aimed at lowering the intake of proteins or specific AAs can be beneficial and have the potential to be widely adopted and effective in optimizing healthspan.

Keywords: calorie restriction; dietary intervention; fasting mimicking diet (FMD); healthspan; longevity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aging / pathology
  • Aging / physiology*
  • Amino Acids* / administration & dosage
  • Amino Acids* / deficiency
  • Animals
  • Caloric Restriction*
  • DNA Damage / physiology
  • Diet
  • Dietary Proteins*
  • Disease* / etiology
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological
  • Signal Transduction / physiology
  • Yeasts


  • Amino Acids
  • Dietary Proteins