Aging, Oxidative Stress, and Cardiovascular Disorders
ABSTRACT Aging is a progressive decay of the physiologic efficiency of an organism as well as a major risk factor for the development
of cardiovascular disease. Due to constant birth rates and increasing life expectancy, the proportion of elderly people is
steadily growing in most developed countries, thus the need to better understand aging and its molecular basis is becoming
a central issue. Accumulation of oxidative stress with age is hypothesized to be the primary causative mediator of age-associated
diseases. Among different tissues, aging vessels are known to accumulate oxidative damage and undergo functional impairment.
Oxidative stress affects the availability and/or balance of key regulators of vascular homeostasis and favors the development
of cardiovascular disease. Reactive oxygen species are generated by different intracellular molecular pathways principally
located in the cytoplasm and in the mitochondria. The mitochondrial protein p66Shc and the deacetylase enzyme Sirt1 were shown to be involved in different aspects of aging and age-dependent disease. This
chapter focuses on the latest scientific advances in understanding aging and age-related disease and delineates the possible
therapeutic implications of p66Shc and Sirt 1 in this process.