Buck Institute for Research on Aging

Dissect the Effects of Long-Term Environmental Stresses on Cellular Physiology and Aging

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Aging, the process where our bodies gradually become less efficient, is strongly influenced by our environment, not just our genes. This includes everything we’re exposed to throughout life, like pollution, diet, and stress. Therefore, it is critical to understand how these environmental factors, known as the exposome, affect aging. Previously, most aging research focused on genetics, using controlled lab conditions that didn’t consider the varied environments we actually live in. This study is different and will focus on how cells react to life-long exposure to environmental stressors, like climate changes. The research has two main goals. First, to find out how different environmental stresses change protein behavior in a cell. Second, to explore how these environmental factors affect how cell ages through the lens of its entire proteome. This study is important because it could change how we understand aging or the approach to intervene the aging course. It might lead to new discoveries about why we age and how we can live healthier, longer lives. The research team is well-equipped for this task, using advanced technologies to track how proteins in cells react to different environmental conditions.