Research report 2013 - Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing
Maternal genes can contribute to the ageing of a child
Ross, Jaime M.; Stewart, James B.; Hagström, Erik; Brené, Stefan; Mourier, Arnaud; Coppotelli, Giuseppe; Freyer, Christoph; Lagouge, Marie; Hoffer, Barry J.; Olson, Lars; Winnen, Brit; Larsson, Nils-Göran
SummaryThere are many causes for ageing. Different types of damage to our cells determine the ageing process and influence the functionality of our organs. Of special significance are damages to the "power stations" of the cells, the mitochondria. Mutations in the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) lead to deterioration of the cellular energy production. Now, the researchers presenting this study have shown that the ageing process is attributable not only to the accumulation of mtDNA damage during a person's lifetime, but also to their maternally inherited mtDNA.