Moderation: J. Haendeler, Düsseldorf; M. Gogol, Coppenbrügge
Ageing and the development of chronic conditions seems to be two sides of a coin. Despite the fact that this association is not fully understood today, it´s a well-known phenomenon that also the occurrence of chronic conditions itself accelerate the ageing process. Basic research in biology and in clinical phenotypes reveal more and more the potential of translating the growing knowledge of pathological processes to clinical interventions as well as what researchers and clinicians can learn from each other. In this symposium the lectures discuss environmental stressors for health. Firstly, particulate matter affects not only the lung but also the cardiovascular system. Carbon nanoparticles, which are one constituent of air pollution, induce senescence in lung epithelial cells and vascular endothelial cells leading to impaired cellular function ex vivo and in vivo. One common mechanism is the induction of oxidative stress. Reexpression of the antioxidative enzyme Thioredoxin- 1 can rescue the senescent phenotypes and thereby the impaired functions. Secondly, in a talk about vascular ageing the role of dioxin will be discussed. Epidemiological studies showed an increase in cardiovascular morbidity and mortality as a consequence of the “Seveso accident”, during which large amount of dioxins were released. Our mechanistic studies demonstrate that the dioxin receptor, a protein required for detoxification of environmental toxins, impairs vascular functions, similar to the changes seen during the ageing process. Sarcopenia in older adults is nowadays recognized as a geriatric syndrome. Multiple etiological factors contribute to its development. From a molecular point of view the question comes up if there is a common route of sarcopenia origin which will make it possible to intervene with new developed drugs in all sarcopenia patients, or do we need specific biomarker which allow the identification of specific etiologies and which can act as predictors for a successful intervention. This questions cannot be answered yet and will require further research.