Integrated Transcriptome and Proteome Analyses Reveal Organ-Specific Proteome Deterioration in Old Rats

Cell Syst. 2015 Sep 23;1(3):224-37. doi: 10.1016/j.cels.2015.08.012. Epub 2015 Sep 17.


Aging is associated with the decline of protein, cell, and organ function. Here, we use an integrated approach to characterize gene expression, bulk translation, and cell biology in the brains and livers of young and old rats. We identify 468 differences in protein abundance between young and old animals. The majority are a consequence of altered translation output, that is, the combined effect of changes in transcript abundance and translation efficiency. In addition, we identify 130 proteins whose overall abundance remains unchanged but whose sub-cellular localization, phosphorylation state, or splice-form varies. While some protein-level differences appear to be a generic property of the rats' chronological age, the majority are specific to one organ. These may be a consequence of the organ's physiology or the chronological age of the cells within the tissue. Taken together, our study provides an initial view of the proteome at the molecular, sub-cellular, and organ level in young and old rats.