Summary: Rilmenidine, a drug commonly prescribed to help treat hypertension, may help slow the effects of aging and extend lifespan, a new study reports.
Source: University of Liverpool
Researchers have found that the drug rilmenidine can extend lifespan and slow aging.
Published in Aging Cell, the results show that animals treated with rilmenidine, currently used to treat hypertension, at young and older ages increase lifespan and improve health markers, mimicking the effects of calorie restriction .
They also demonstrate that the health and lifespan benefits of rilmenidine treatment in roundworms C.elegans are mediated by the I1-imidazoline nish-1 receptor, identifying this receptor as a potential longevity target.
Unlike other drugs previously studied for this purpose by researchers, rilmenidine, a widely prescribed oral antihypertensive, has potential for future translation into humans, as side effects are rare and not serious.
To date, a calorie restriction diet has been considered the most robust anti-aging intervention, promoting longevity across species. However, studies of calorie restriction in humans have had mixed results and side effects, meaning finding drugs like rilmenidine that can mimic the benefits of calorie restriction is the most reasonable anti-aging strategy. .
Professor João Pedro Magalhães, who led the research at the University of Liverpool and is now based at the University of Birmingham, said: “With an aging global population, the benefits of delaying ageing, however slightly, are huge. There is huge untapped potential in translational geroscience in the reuse of drugs capable of extending lifespan and lifespan.
“For the first time, we were able to show in animals that rilmenidine can increase lifespan. We are now keen to explore whether rilmenidine may have further clinical applications.
Funding: This study was undertaken by researchers from the University of Liverpool, ETH Zürich and Harvard Medical School, and funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation, LongeCity and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.
About this pharmacology and aging research news
Author: Jennifer Morgan
Source: University of Liverpool
Contact: Jennifer Morgan – University of Liverpool
Picture: Image is in public domain
Original research: Free access.
“Rilmenidine prolongs the lifespan and lifespan of C. elegans via a nischarin I1-imidazoline receptor” by João Pedro Magalhães et al. aging cell
Rilmenidine prolongs the lifespan and lifespan of C. elegans via a nischarin I1-imidazoline receptor
The reuse of drugs capable of extending lifespan and health span has enormous untapped potential in translational geroscience.
Here, we searched for known compounds that elicit a gene expression signature similar to calorie restriction and identified rilmenidine, an I1-imidazoline receptor agonist and prescription drug for the treatment of hypertension.
We then show that the treatment Caenorhabditis elegans with rilmenidine at young and older ages increases lifespan. We also demonstrate that the stress resistance, lifespan, and lifespan benefits of rilmenidine treatment in C.elegans are mediated by the I1-imidazoline receptor nish-1implicating this receptor as a potential longevity target.
Consistent with common gene signature mimicking calorie restriction, supplementing rilmenidine to limit calories C.elegans, genetic reduction of TORC1 function, or treatment with rapamycin did not further increase lifespan. Rilmenidine-induced longevity required FOXO/DAF-16 and NRF1,2,3/SKN-1 transcription factors. F
Additionally, we find that autophagy, but not AMPK signaling, was required for rilmenidine-induced longevity. Additionally, transcriptional changes similar to calorie restriction were observed in liver and kidney tissues in mice treated with rilmenidine.
Together, these results reveal a geroprotective mimetic effect and potential caloric restriction by rilmenidine that warrant further avenues of investigation into this compound.