Some Phenotypic Characteristics of Nematode Caenorhabditis Elegans Strains with Defective Functions of the Sestrin (cSesn) Gene
A. O. Zeltukhin1, G. V. Ilyinskaya1,2, A. V. Budanov1,3 and P. M. Chumakov1,4

1Engelhardt Institute of Molecular Biology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia.

2Blokhin Cancer Research Center, Moscow, Russia.

3Trinity Biomedical Sciences Institute, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland.

4Chumakov Institute of Poliomyelitis and Viral Encephalitides, Federal Scientific Center for Research and Development of Immune-Biology Products, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia.

Abstract: In mammals a small family of genes called Sestrins play important roles in the maintenance of metabolic and redox homeostasis, suggesting that the genes may positively affect the lifespan and counteract the age-related functional decline. The nematode genome contains a single cSesn gene that makes the Caenorhabditis elegans an excellent model for studying functions of the sestrin family.  We describe phenotypic differences of worms that have compromised expression of cSesn gene. By comparing three different cSesn-deficient modes with the wild-type C. elegans strain we show that the abrogation of cSesn expression results in an increased body size, an extended period of body growth, a reduces brood size and number of offspring per a single worm, an accelerated decline in muscular functions revealed as a rapid decrease in the pharyngeal pumping rate and in the overall locomotory activity.  The results are consistent with the potential roles of cSesn in counteracting the process of aging in C. elegans.

Keywords: Aging; Metabolism; Caenorhabditis Elegans; Sestrin Gene; Stress Resistance; Body Size; Age-Related Manifestations

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