Proteostasis, oxidative stress and aging

Redox Biol. 2017 Oct;13:550-567. doi: 10.1016/j.redox.2017.07.008. Epub 2017 Jul 12.


The production of reactive species is an inevitable by-product of metabolism and thus, life itself. Since reactive species are able to damage cellular structures, especially proteins, as the most abundant macromolecule of mammalian cells, systems are necessary which regulate and preserve a functional cellular protein pool, in a process termed "proteostasis". Not only the mammalian protein pool is subject of a constant turnover, organelles are also degraded and rebuild. The most important systems for these removal processes are the "ubiquitin-proteasomal system" (UPS), the central proteolytic machinery of mammalian cells, mainly responsible for proteostasis, as well as the "autophagy-lysosomal system", which mediates the turnover of organelles and large aggregates. Many age-related pathologies and the aging process itself are accompanied by a dysregulation of UPS, autophagy and the cross-talk between both systems. This review will describe the sources and effects of oxidative stress, preservation of cellular protein- and organelle-homeostasis and the effects of aging on proteostasis in mammalian cells.

Keywords: Autophagy; Lysosome; Oxidative stress; Proteasome; Redox shift.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aging / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Autophagy
  • Glycation End Products, Advanced / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Lipofuscin / metabolism
  • Oxidative Stress*
  • Proteostasis*


  • Glycation End Products, Advanced
  • Lipofuscin