Down syndrome (DS) has been proposed by George Martin as a segmental progeroid syndrome since 1978. In fact, DS persons suffer from several age-associated disorders much earlier than euploid persons. Furthermore, a series of recent studies have found that DS persons display elevated levels of age biomarkers, thus supporting the notion that DS is a progeroid trait. Nowadays, due to the progressive advancements in social inclusion processes and medical assistance, DS persons live much longer than in the past; therefore, the early-onset health problems of these persons are becoming an urgent and largely unmet social and medical burden. In particular, the most important ailment of DS persons is the accelerated cognitive decline that starts when they reach about 40 years of age. This decline can be at least in part counteracted by multi-systemic approaches including early-onset cognitive training, physical activity, and psychosocial assistance. However, no pharmacological treatment is approved to counteract this decline. According to the most advanced conceptualization of Geroscience, tackling the molecular mechanisms underpinning the aging process should be a smart/feasible strategy to combat and/or delay the great majority of age-related diseases, including cognitive decline. We think that a debate is needed urgently on if (and how) this strategy could be integrated in protocols to face DS-associated dementia and overall unhealthy aging. In particular we propose that, on the basis of data obtained in different clinical settings, metformin is a promising candidate that could be exploited to counteract cognitive decline in DS.

Accelerated bio-cognitive aging in Down syndrome: State of the art and possible deceleration strategies

Franceschi C;Garagnani P;Gensous N;Bacalini MG;Conte M;Salvioli S
2019

Abstract

Down syndrome (DS) has been proposed by George Martin as a segmental progeroid syndrome since 1978. In fact, DS persons suffer from several age-associated disorders much earlier than euploid persons. Furthermore, a series of recent studies have found that DS persons display elevated levels of age biomarkers, thus supporting the notion that DS is a progeroid trait. Nowadays, due to the progressive advancements in social inclusion processes and medical assistance, DS persons live much longer than in the past; therefore, the early-onset health problems of these persons are becoming an urgent and largely unmet social and medical burden. In particular, the most important ailment of DS persons is the accelerated cognitive decline that starts when they reach about 40 years of age. This decline can be at least in part counteracted by multi-systemic approaches including early-onset cognitive training, physical activity, and psychosocial assistance. However, no pharmacological treatment is approved to counteract this decline. According to the most advanced conceptualization of Geroscience, tackling the molecular mechanisms underpinning the aging process should be a smart/feasible strategy to combat and/or delay the great majority of age-related diseases, including cognitive decline. We think that a debate is needed urgently on if (and how) this strategy could be integrated in protocols to face DS-associated dementia and overall unhealthy aging. In particular we propose that, on the basis of data obtained in different clinical settings, metformin is a promising candidate that could be exploited to counteract cognitive decline in DS.
Franceschi C, Garagnani P, Gensous N, Bacalini MG, Conte M, Salvioli S
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/700762
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