Age-related RNA decline in adult Drosophila melanogaster

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Abstract

We investigated the correlation between age and total RNA levels in long-lived and control lines of Drosophila melanogaster. Total RNA was extracted at 10 ages from 1-63 days posteclosion from 3 inbred lines, with replication. Three different methods of RNA quantitation gave highly correlated estimates. Total RNA declined substantially with age, exhibiting a dramatic drop in the first few days of adult life. We find no evidence for a causal relationship between adult longevity and total RNA levels, since long-lived and control lines exhibited similar patterns of age-related RNA decline. These observations suggest that the dramatic decline in total RNA that occurs early in adult life does not explain the twofold differences in life span between lines. The pattern of age-specific decline coincides with published observations on age-specific metabolic rates, and suggests that 14-day-old flies are functionally senescent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)896-901
Number of pages6
JournalJournals of Gerontology - Series A Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences
Volume59
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2004

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