Sirtuins pp 303-311 | Cite as

Utilizing Calorie Restriction to Evaluate the Role of Sirtuins in Healthspan and Lifespan of Mice

  • Jessica Curtis
  • Rafael de Cabo
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1077)


Calorie restriction is the most powerful method currently known to delay aging-associated disease and extend lifespan. Use of this technique in combination with genetic models has led to identification of key metabolic regulators of lifespan. Limiting energy availability by restricting caloric intake leads to redistribution of energy expenditure and storage. The signaling required for these metabolic changes is mediated in part by the sirtuins at both the posttranslational and transcriptional levels, and consequently, sirtuins are recognized as instigating factors in the regulation of lifespan. This family of class III protein deacetylases is responsible for directing energy regulation based on NAD+ availability. However, there are many effectors of NAD+ availability, and hence sirtuin action, that should be considered when performing experiments using calorie restriction. The methods outlined in this chapter are intended to provide a guide to help the aging community to use and interpret experimental calorie restriction properly. The importance of healthspan and the use of repeated measures to assess metabolic health during lifespan experiments are strongly emphasized.

Key words

Sirtuins Calorie restriction Lifespan Healthspan 



Dawn Boyer, Dawn Nines, and Justine Lucas for their continuous support and assistance with our animal studies. Dr. Anson for providing helpful feedback on this manuscript. This work was supported by the Intramural Research Program of the National Institute on Aging, NIH.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jessica Curtis
    • 1
  • Rafael de Cabo
    • 1
  1. 1.Translational Gerontology BranchIntramural Research Program, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of HealthBaltimoreUSA

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