• Nutritional Mediators of Cellular Decline and Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Older Adults

      Guralnik, Jack M; Feige, Jerome N; Singh, Anurag; Fielding, Roger A (MDPI AG, 2021-04-06)
      Aging is a primary risk factor for the progressive loss of function, disease onset, and increased vulnerability to negative health-related outcomes. These clinical manifestations arise in part from declines in mitochondrial, metabolic, and other processes considered to be hallmarks of aging. Collectively, these changes can be defined as age-associated cellular decline (AACD) and are often associated with fatigue, reduced strength, and low physical activity. This manuscript summarizes a recent Gerontological Society of America Annual Scientific Meeting symposium that explored mechanisms, clinical signs, and emerging cellular nutrition interventions for AACD. The session opened by highlighting results of an expert consensus that developed an initial framework to identify self-reported symptoms and observable signs of AACD in adults aged >50 years. Next, findings from the multi-ethnic molecular determinants of sarcopenia study were discussed, showing impaired mitochondrial bioenergetic capacity and NAD+ metabolism in skeletal muscle of older adults with sarcopenia. Lastly, recent clinical evidence was presented linking urolithin A, a natural mitophagy activator, to improved mitochondrial and cellular health. The virtual panel discussed how stimulation of mitochondrial function via biological pathways, such as mitophagy and NAD+ augmentation, could improve cellular function and muscle health, potentially impacting clinical signs of AACD and overall healthy aging.