Journal or Book Title
During normal development or during disease, animal cells experience hypoxic (low oxygen) conditions, and the hypoxiainducible factor (HIF) transcription factors implement most of the critical changes in gene expression that enable animals to adapt to this stress. Here, we examine the roles of HIF-1 in post-mitotic aging. We examined the effects of HIF-1 overexpression and of hif-1 loss-of-function mutations on longevity in C. elegans, a powerful genetic system in which adult somatic cells are post-mitotic. We constructed transgenic lines that expressed varying levels of HIF-1 protein and discovered a positive correlation between HIF-1 expression levels and lifespan. The data further showed that HIF-1 acted in parallel to the SKN-1/NRF and DAF-16/FOXO transcription factors to promote longevity. HIF-1 over-expression also conferred increased resistance to heat and oxidative stress. We isolated and characterized additional hif-1 mutations, and we found that each of 3 loss-of-function mutations conferred increased longevity in normal lab culture conditions, but, unlike HIF-1 overexpression, a hif-1 deletion mutation did not extend the lifespan of daf-16 or skn-1 mutants. We conclude that HIF-1 overexpression and hif-1 loss-of-function mutations promote longevity by different pathways. These data establish HIF-1 as one of the key stress-responsive transcription factors that modulate longevity in C. elegans and advance our understanding of the regulatory networks that link oxygen homeostasis and aging.
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Yi Zhang et al.
Zhang, Yi; Shao, Zhiyong; Zhai, Zhiwei; Shen, Chuan; and Powell-Coffman, Jo Anne, "The HIF-1 Hypoxia-Inducible Factor Modulates Lifespan in C. elegans" (2009). Genetics, Development and Cell Biology Publications. 10.