Influence of calorie reduction on DNA repair capacity of human peripheral blood mononuclear cells

Mech Ageing Dev. 2016 Mar;154:24-9. doi: 10.1016/j.mad.2016.02.008. Epub 2016 Feb 13.


Caloric restrictive feeding prolongs the lifespan of a variety of model organisms like rodents and invertebrates. It has been shown that caloric restriction reduces age-related as well as overall-mortality, reduces oxidative stress and influences DNA repair ability positively. There are numerous studies underlining this, but fewer studies involving humans exist. To contribute to a better understanding of the correlation of calorie reduction and DNA repair in humans, we adapted the host cell reactivation assay to an application with human peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Furthermore, we used this reliable and reproducible assay to research the influence of a special kind of calorie reduction, namely F. X. Mayr therapy, on DNA repair capacity. We found a positive effect in all persons with low pre-existing DNA repair capacity. In individuals with normal pre-existing DNA repair capacity, no effect on DNA repair capacity was detectable. Decline of DNA repair, accumulation of oxidative DNA damages, mitochondrial dysfunction, telomere shortening as well as caloric intake are widely thought to contribute to aging. With regard to that, our results can be considered as a strong indication that calorie reduction may support DNA repair processes and thus contribute to a healthier aging.

Keywords: Calorie reduction; DNA repair capacity; F. X. Mayr therapy; Human peripheral blood mononuclear cells; Modified host cell reactivation assay.

MeSH terms

  • Aging / blood*
  • Caloric Restriction*
  • DNA Repair*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear / metabolism*
  • Male