Blood cell deficiency turns abdominal fat into an aging agent

Aging and inflammation go hand-in-hand. Activation of inflammatory, which is observed with age, gives impetus to the development of diseases such as atherosclerosis, diabetes mellitus, contributes to the progression of neurodegenerative diseases. But what factors increase the activity of inflammation with age? Scientists at the University of Bern (Sweden) have found that abdominal fat and eosinophils play an important role in this process. 

Visceral obesity - excessive abdominal fat - has been shown to be a common cause of chronic inflammation in the body. However, Swiss researchers have found that such properties are not characteristic of abdominal fat during youth - the negative effects develop as we age. Experts from Bern found that in young years, inflammation in visceral fat is suppressed by eosinophils.

These blood cells are usually remembered in connection with allergic diseases, parasitic invasions, in which the level of eosinophils increases. In the course of the research described, a different role of these cells was revealed. It turned out that they migrate from the blood into the adipose tissue of the abdominal cavity, where they maintain the balance of the local immune system and suppress inflammation. As we age, the concentration of eosinophils in abdominal fat decreases, and the number of macrophage immune cells that activate inflammation increases. There is an imbalance that makes visceral fat a source of pro-inflammatory mediators for the whole body. 

Scientists have demonstrated their adherence to the concept of animal trials. When elderly mice were injected into the abdominal cavity by eosinophils from young rodents, this inhibited inflammation not only in the area of visceral fat accumulation but also in the whole body. In addition, after a while the old animals began to show signs of rejuvenation: they have increased physical strength and endurance. 

- Our results show that the biological processes of aging and related functional disorders are more plastic than previously thought," the authors of the study emphasized. - Our future work will use this knowledge to develop targeted therapeutic approaches to promote and maintain healthy aging in humans. 

July 8, 2020, 11:05 a.m.

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