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The role of low-grade inflammation and metabolic flexibility in aging and nutritional modulation thereof: A systems biology approach

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Author: Calçada, D. · Vianello, D. · Giampieri, E. · Sala, C. · Castellani, G. · Graaf, A.A. de · Kremer, S.H.A. · Ommen, B. van · Feskens, E. · Santoro, A. · Franceschi, C. · Bouwman, J.
Publisher: Elsevier Ireland Ltd
Source:Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, 136-137, 138-147
Identifier: 503233
doi: doi:10.1016/j.mad.2014.01.004
Keywords: Nutrition · Inflammaging · Mathematical model · Metabolic flexibility · Nutrition · Systems biology · Food and Nutrition · Healthy Living · Life · RAPID - Risk Assessment Products in Development MSB - Microbiology and Systems Biology · ELSS - Earth, Life and Social Sciences


Aging is a biological process characterized by the progressive functional decline of many interrelated physiological systems. In particular, aging is associated with the development of a systemic state of low-grade chronic inflammation (inflammaging), and with progressive deterioration of metabolic function. Systems biology has helped in identifying the mediators and pathways involved in these phenomena, mainly through the application of high-throughput screening methods, valued for their molecular comprehensiveness. Nevertheless, inflammation and metabolic regulation are dynamical processes whose behavior must be understood at multiple levels of biological organization (molecular, cellular, organ, and system levels) and on multiple time scales. Mathematical modeling of such behavior, with incorporation of mechanistic knowledge on interactions between inflammatory and metabolic mediators, may help in devising nutritional interventions capable of preventing, or ameliorating, the age-associated functional decline of the corresponding systems. © 2014 The Authors.