Translational control in cell ageing: an update

Katrina Woodward, Nikolay E. Shirokikh

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    11 Citations (Scopus)


    Cellular ageing is one of the main drivers of organismal ageing and holds keys towards improving the longevity and quality of the extended life. Elucidating mechanisms underlying the emergence of the aged cells as well as their altered responses to the environment will help understanding the evolutionarily defined longevity preferences across species with different strategies of survival. Much is understood about the role of alterations in the DNA, including many epigenetic modifications such as methylation, in relation to the aged cell phenotype. While transcriptomes of the aged cells are beginning to be better-characterised, their translational responses remain under active investigation. Many of the translationally controlled homeostatic pathways are centred around mitigation of DNA damage, cell stress response and regulation of the proliferative potential of the cells, and thus are critical for the aged cell function. Translation profiling-type studies have boosted the opportunities in discovering the function of protein biosynthesis control and are starting to be applied to the aged cells. Here, we provide a summary of the current knowledge about translational mechanisms considered to be commonly altered in the aged cells, including the integrated stress response-, mechanistic target of Rapamycin- and elongation factor 2 kinase-mediated pathways. We enlist and discuss findings of the recent works that use broad profiling-type approaches to investigate the age-related translational pathways. We outline the limitations of the methods and the remaining unknowns in the established ageing-associated translation mechanisms, and flag translational mechanisms with high prospective importance in ageing, for future studies.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2853-2869
    Number of pages17
    JournalBiochemical Society Transactions
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


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