Important roles of Akt/PKB signaling in the aging process.

Cell Differentiation and Development Center, Marshall University, Huntington, WV 25755 25755-1090, USA.
Frontiers in bioscience (Scholar edition) 01/2010; 2:1169-88. DOI: 10.2741/S125
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The increased costs associated with an ever-growing aged population are expected to pose a significant burden on health care resources. From a biological standpoint, aging is an accelerated deteriorative process in tissue structure and function that is associated with higher morbidity and mortality. The Akt / protein kinase B (PKB) is a family of serine / threonine protein kinases, which play prominent roles in a diverse number of processes including cell survival, cell growth, gene expression, apoptosis, protein synthesis, energy metabolism and oncogenesis. It is likely that age-related changes in tissue structure and function are related to alterations in Akt expression and Akt-dependent signaling. Here we review the role that Akt may play in the aging process and attempt, where possible, to highlight how these data may lead to new directions of inquiry and clinical relevance to the aged.

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