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Accession IconGSE27677

A conserved JNK/AP-1 module is a key mediator of intermittent fasting-induced longevity in C. elegans

Organism Icon Caenorhabditis elegans
Sample Icon 46 Downloadable Samples
Technology Badge Icon Affymetrix C. elegans Genome Array (celegans)

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Dietary restriction extends lifespan and delays the age-related physiological decline in many species. Intermittent fasting (IF) is one of the most effective dietary restriction regimens that extends lifespan in C. elegans and mammals1,2. In C. elegans, the FOXO transcription factor DAF-16 is implicated in fasting-induced gene expression changes and the longevity response to IF3; however, the mechanisms that sense and transduce fasting-stress stimuli have remained largely unknown. Here we show that a KGB-1/AP1 (activator protein 1) module is a key signalling pathway that mediates fasting-induced transcriptional changes and IF-induced longevity. Our promoter analysis coupled to genome-wide microarray results has shown that the AP-1-binding site, together with the FOXO-binding site, is highly over-represented in the promoter regions of fasting-induced genes. We find that JUN-1 (C. elegans c-Jun) and FOS-1 (C. elegans c-Fos), which constitute the AP-1 transcription factor complex, are required for IF-induced longevity. We also find that KGB-1 acts as a direct activator of JUN-1 and FOS-1, is activated in response to fasting, and, among the three C. elegans JNKs, is specifically required for IF-induced longevity. Our results demonstrate that most fasting-induced upregulated genes, including almost all of the DAF-16-dependent genes, require KGB-1 and JUN-1 function for their induction, and that the loss of kgb-1 suppresses the fasting-induced upregulation of DAF-16 target genes without affecting fasting-induced DAF-16 nuclear translocation. These findings identify the evolutionarily conserved JNK/AP-1 module as a key mediator of fasting-stress responses, and suggest a model in which two fasting-induced signalling pathways leading to DAF-16 nuclear translocation and KGB-1/AP-1 activation, respectively, integrate in the nucleus to coordinately mediate fasting-induced transcriptional changes and IF-induced longevity.
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