Researchers at the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) published a study in the journal Nature Medicine that shows positive results regarding the use of urolithin A in the anti-aging process. Pomegranates contain natural metabolite of ellagitannins that generates urolithin A by the contact with gut microflora. The study proves that urolithin A enhances mitochondrial and muscle functions.
The team at EPFL partnership with the innovative life science company Amazentis S.A., to develop a nutritional supplement that may improve muscle strength and endurance during aging.
The study was published on Monday and EPFL president, and co-founder of Amazentis, Patrick Aebischer, said that they believe the research, uncovering the health benefits of urolithin, could promise the reversing of muscle aging. He added that it is an entirely natural substance, and reaffirmed that its effect is powerful and measurable. Reuters reports.
The Swiss scientists have isolated urolithin A that they believe it helps the process called mitophagy, that allows parts of the cell that become defective to be cleared away, which makes way for replacements, says the Telegraph.
The study shows that giving urolithin to mice increased their running endurance by an average of 42 percent, and their 8-to-10 day lifespan by more than 45 percent. The article title is “Urolithin A induces mitophagy and prolongs lifespan in C. Elegans and increases muscle function in rodents.”
Amazentis is currently evaluating urolithin A in a first human trial with results expected in 2017.
Chris Rinsch, Ph.D., co-author, CEO and also co-founder of Amazentis, commented that they had advanced their lead product delivering urolithin A into clinical trials. He added that they believe that this discovery will open the door to a new approach for managing muscle decline by rejuvenating mitochondria. He said that their vision is to translate scientific discoveries in nutrition into clinically validated health products to satisfy the today’s needs in an aging population.
Mitophagy: Understanding the process and how urolithin A works
Aebischer explains that mitophagy declines in cells during the aging process and the reduction in mitochondrial function in the muscles of the elderly is believed to be one of the leading causes of age-related muscle impairment.
News Medicals says that when consuming pomegranate juice, ellagitannins broke in the stomach and then transforms in then are processed by intestinal bacteria into urolithin A. The biotransformation shows variation across individuals, with some showing high or low conversion rates, while others have different compositions of microflora and are unable to make the conversion.
This is why supplementing individuals with designed products that are made to calibrate doses of urolithin A carefully to overcome the natural diversity in gut microflora found globally.
When humans age, skeletal muscles mass reduces and results in the loss of strength. News Medical reports that these changes can weaken the person and can lead to a condition called sarcopenia, which is thought to affect 30 percent of individuals over 60 years old and 50 percent of people over 80 years.
Recent estimates in the United States project informs that there will be more than 75 million adults over 60 years by the year 2020, and they are all vulnerable to sarcopenia. News Medical reports.
Source: News Medical