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      Cellular Senescence in Brain Aging

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          Abstract

          Aging of the brain can manifest itself as a memory and cognitive decline, which has been shown to frequently coincide with changes in the structural plasticity of dendritic spines. Decreased number and maturity of spines in aged animals and humans, together with changes in synaptic transmission, may reflect aberrant neuronal plasticity directly associated with impaired brain functions. In extreme, a neurodegenerative disease, which completely devastates the basic functions of the brain, may develop. While cellular senescence in peripheral tissues has recently been linked to aging and a number of aging-related disorders, its involvement in brain aging is just beginning to be explored. However, accumulated evidence suggests that cell senescence may play a role in the aging of the brain, as it has been documented in other organs. Senescent cells stop dividing and shift their activity to strengthen the secretory function, which leads to the acquisition of the so called senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP). Senescent cells have also other characteristics, such as altered morphology and proteostasis, decreased propensity to undergo apoptosis, autophagy impairment, accumulation of lipid droplets, increased activity of senescence-associated-β-galactosidase (SA-β-gal), and epigenetic alterations, including DNA methylation, chromatin remodeling, and histone post-translational modifications that, in consequence, result in altered gene expression. Proliferation-competent glial cells can undergo senescence both in vitro and in vivo, and they likely participate in neuroinflammation, which is characteristic for the aging brain. However, apart from proliferation-competent glial cells, the brain consists of post-mitotic neurons. Interestingly, it has emerged recently, that non-proliferating neuronal cells present in the brain or cultivated in vitro can also have some hallmarks, including SASP, typical for senescent cells that ceased to divide. It has been documented that so called senolytics, which by definition, eliminate senescent cells, can improve cognitive ability in mice models. In this review, we ask questions about the role of senescent brain cells in brain plasticity and cognitive functions impairments and how senolytics can improve them. We will discuss whether neuronal plasticity, defined as morphological and functional changes at the level of neurons and dendritic spines, can be the hallmark of neuronal senescence susceptible to the effects of senolytics.

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          Most cited references 194

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          The hallmarks of aging.

          Aging is characterized by a progressive loss of physiological integrity, leading to impaired function and increased vulnerability to death. This deterioration is the primary risk factor for major human pathologies, including cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disorders, and neurodegenerative diseases. Aging research has experienced an unprecedented advance over recent years, particularly with the discovery that the rate of aging is controlled, at least to some extent, by genetic pathways and biochemical processes conserved in evolution. This Review enumerates nine tentative hallmarks that represent common denominators of aging in different organisms, with special emphasis on mammalian aging. These hallmarks are: genomic instability, telomere attrition, epigenetic alterations, loss of proteostasis, deregulated nutrient sensing, mitochondrial dysfunction, cellular senescence, stem cell exhaustion, and altered intercellular communication. A major challenge is to dissect the interconnectedness between the candidate hallmarks and their relative contributions to aging, with the final goal of identifying pharmaceutical targets to improve human health during aging, with minimal side effects. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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            Neurotoxic reactive astrocytes are induced by activated microglia

            A reactive astrocyte subtype termed A1 is induced after injury or disease of the central nervous system and subsequently promotes the death of neurons and oligodendrocytes.
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              Neurofibrillary tangles but not senile plaques parallel duration and severity of Alzheimer's disease.

              We studied the accumulation of neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) and senile plaques (SPs) in 10 Alzheimer's disease patients who had been examined during life. We counted NFTs and SPs in 13 cytoarchitectural regions representing limbic, primary sensory, and association cortices, and in subcortical neurotransmitter-specific areas. The degree of neuropathologic change was compared with the severity of dementia, as assessed by the Blessed Dementia Scale and duration of illness. We found that (1) the severity of dementia was positively related to the number of NFTs in neocortex, but not to the degree of SP deposition; (2) NFTs accumulate in a consistent pattern reflecting hierarchic vulnerability of individual cytoarchitectural fields; (3) NFTs appeared in the entorhinal cortex, CA1/subiculum field of the hippocampal formation, and the amygdala early in the disease process; and (4) the degree of SP deposition was also related to a hierarchic vulnerability of certain brain areas to accumulate SPs, but the pattern of SP distribution was different from that of NFT.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                Front Aging Neurosci
                Front Aging Neurosci
                Front. Aging Neurosci.
                Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                1663-4365
                25 February 2021
                2021
                : 13
                Affiliations
                1Laboratory of Molecular Bases of Aging, Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology, PAS , Warsaw, Poland
                2Laboratory of Neuropsychology, Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology, PAS , Warsaw, Poland
                3Laboratory of Cell Biophysics, Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology, PAS , Warsaw, Poland
                Author notes

                Edited by: Jolanta Dorszewska, Poznan University of Medical Sciences, Poland

                Reviewed by: Jose Felix Moruno-Manchon, University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, United States; Susana Castro-Obregon, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico

                *Correspondence: Ewa Sikora e.sikora@ 123456nencki.edu.pl
                Article
                10.3389/fnagi.2021.646924
                7959760
                Copyright © 2021 Sikora, Bielak-Zmijewska, Dudkowska, Krzystyniak, Mosieniak, Wesierska and Wlodarczyk.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                Page count
                Figures: 6, Tables: 0, Equations: 0, References: 194, Pages: 23, Words: 19138
                Funding
                Funded by: Narodowe Centrum Nauki 10.13039/501100004281
                Categories
                Neuroscience
                Review

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