EPIAge

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Reduction of daily energy intake is considered to lead to health protective effects in various conditions such as diabetes and metabolic syndrome, neurodegeneration and even cancer. Intermittent or periodical fasting is a convenient alternative to conventional fasting regimens. Intermittent fasting is characterized by periods of complete calorie restriction followed by periods of unlimited calorie intake, usually performed in 24 hours cycles. The cooperative flagship project EPIAge will investigate blood samples of patients undergoing such a 24 hour intermittent fasting regime. Previous studies have already demonstrated that intermittent fasting exhibits life-prolonging and beneficial health effects in several animal models, but the underlying mechanisms are still far from being fully understood.  Based on the large-scale InterFAST study where patients undergo intermittent fasting and are strictly medically monitored, EPIAge will investigate the molecular mechanism underlying the beneficial health effects of intermittent fasting. Based on already collected samples from patients, key players of fasting will be identified using various established analytical methods. The study aims to answer two major questions:

  1. What kind of molecular alterations are mediated through fasting?
  2. Which of these molecular factors are causally responsible for the beneficial effects of fasting on overall health and longevity?

Selected key factors will then be evaluated in established fly and mouse models of aging and intermittent fasting in order to find the causal targets for life and health span extension. Moreover, results obtained in EPIAge will reveal underlying mechanisms of fasting and more importantly could serve as diagnostic tools to determine the metabolic health status and fasting success in humans.


Principal Investigator
Univ.-Prof. Dr. Frank Madeo
Institute of Molecular Biosciences
University of Graz, Austria
Curriculum Vitae


Co-Principal Investigator
Univ. Prof. Dr. Michael R. Speicher
Institute of Human Genetics
Medical University of Graz, Austria
Curriculum Vitae

 
Co-Principal Investigator
Assoz. Prof. Dr. Ellen Heitzer
Institute of Human Genetics
Medical University of Graz, Austria
Curriculum Vitae

Project members
Univ. Prof. Dr. Thomas Pieber, Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Endocrinology and Diabetology, Medical University of Graz, Austria
Curriculum Vitae

Dr. Petra Kotzbeck, Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Endocrinology and Diabetology, Medical University of Graz, Austria
Curriculum Vitae, Publications

Dr. Cornelia Sommer-Ruck, Institute of Molecular Biosciences, University of Graz, Austria
Curriculum Vitae

Dr. Gerhard Thallinger, Institute of Computational Biotechnology, Graz University of Technology, Austria
Curriculum Vitae

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