Role of sirtuins in lifespan regulation is linked to methylation of nicotinamide

Kathrin Schmeisser, Johannes Mansfeld, Doreen Kuhlow, Sandra Weimer, Steffen Priebe, Ines Heiland, Marc Birringer, Marco Groth, Alexandra Segref, Yariv Kanfi, Nathan L. Price, Sebastian Schmeisser, Stefan Schuster, Andreas F.H. Pfeiffer, Reinhard Guthke, Matthias Platzer, Thorsten Hoppe, Haim Y. Cohen, Kim Zarse, David A. SinclairMichael Ristow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

186 Scopus citations

Abstract

Sirtuins, a family of histone deacetylases, have a fiercely debated role in regulating lifespan. In contrast with recent observations, here we find that overexpression of sir-2.1, the ortholog of mammalian SirT1, does extend Caenorhabditis elegans lifespan. Sirtuins mandatorily convert NAD + into nicotinamide (NAM). We here find that NAM and its metabolite, 1-methylnicotinamide (MNA), extend C. elegans lifespan, even in the absence of sir-2.1. We identify a previously unknown C. elegans nicotinamide-N- methyltransferase, encoded by a gene now named anmt-1, to generate MNA from NAM. Disruption and overexpression of anmt-1 have opposing effects on lifespan independent of sirtuins, with loss of anmt-1 fully inhibiting sir-2.1-mediated lifespan extension. MNA serves as a substrate for a newly identified aldehyde oxidase, GAD-3, to generate hydrogen peroxide, which acts as a mitohormetic reactive oxygen species signal to promote C. elegans longevity. Taken together, sirtuin-mediated lifespan extension depends on methylation of NAM, providing an unexpected mechanistic role for sirtuins beyond histone deacetylation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)693-700
Number of pages8
JournalNature Chemical Biology
Volume9
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2013
Externally publishedYes

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