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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14(9), 17643-17663; doi:10.3390/ijms140917643

Oxidative Stress and Epigenetic Regulation in Ageing and Age-Related Diseases

1 Division of Cardiovascular Epigenetics, Department of Cardiology, Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main 60596, Germany 2 Molecular Cardiology Laboratory, IRCCS-Policlinico San Donato, San Donato Milanese, Milan 20097, Italy 3 Pasteur Institute-Cenci-Bolognetti Foundation, Department of Drug Chemistry and Technologies, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome 00185, Italy 4 Internal Medicine Clinic III, Department of Cardiology, Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main 60596, Germany
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 21 May 2013 / Revised: 19 August 2013 / Accepted: 21 August 2013 / Published: 28 August 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oxidative Stress and Ageing)
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Recent statistics indicate that the human population is ageing rapidly. Healthy, but also diseased, elderly people are increasing. This trend is particularly evident in Western countries, where healthier living conditions and better cures are available. To understand the process leading to age-associated alterations is, therefore, of the highest relevance for the development of new treatments for age-associated diseases, such as cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer and cardiovascular accidents. Mechanistically, it is well accepted that the accumulation of intracellular damage determined by reactive oxygen species (ROS) might orchestrate the progressive loss of control over biological homeostasis and the functional impairment typical of aged tissues. Here, we review how epigenetics takes part in the control of stress stimuli and the mechanisms of ageing physiology and physiopathology. Alteration of epigenetic enzyme activity, histone modifications and DNA-methylation is, in fact, typically associated with the ageing process. Specifically, ageing presents peculiar epigenetic markers that, taken altogether, form the still ill-defined “ageing epigenome”. The comprehension of mechanisms and pathways leading to epigenetic modifications associated with ageing may help the development of anti-ageing therapies.
Keywords: epigenetics; ageing; oxidative stress; cardiovascular; endothelial; cardiac epigenetics; ageing; oxidative stress; cardiovascular; endothelial; cardiac
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Cencioni, C.; Spallotta, F.; Martelli, F.; Valente, S.; Mai, A.; Zeiher, A.M.; Gaetano, C. Oxidative Stress and Epigenetic Regulation in Ageing and Age-Related Diseases. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14, 17643-17663.

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