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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Korean Red Ginseng Plays an Anti-Aging Role by Modulating Expression of Aging-Related Genes and Immune Cell Subsets

1
Department of Integrative Biotechnology, Sungkyunkwan University, Suwon 16419, Korea
2
Department of Life Sciences, Kyonggi University, Suwon 16227, Korea
3
Department of Veterinary Physiology, College of Medicine, Chonbuk National University, Iksan 54596, Korea
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors are equally contributed.
Academic Editor: Deok Chun Yang
Molecules 2020, 25(7), 1492; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25071492
Received: 8 March 2020 / Revised: 20 March 2020 / Accepted: 25 March 2020 / Published: 25 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Trends in Ginseng Research)
Despite previous reports of anti-aging effects of Korean red ginseng (KRG), the underlying mechanisms remain poorly understood. Therefore, this study investigated possible mechanisms of KRG-mediated anti-aging effects in aged mice. KRG significantly inhibited thymic involution in old mice. Interestingly, KRG only increased protein expression, but not mRNA expression, of aging-related genes Lin28a, GDF-11, Sirt1, IL-2, and IL-17 in the thymocytes of old mice. KRG also modulated the population of some types of immune cells in old mice. KRG increased the population of regulatory T cells and interferon-gamma (IFN-γ)-expressing natural killer (NK) cells in the spleen of old mice, but serum levels of regulatory T cell-specific cytokines IL-10 and TGF-β were unaffected. Finally, KRG recovered mRNA expression of Lin28a, GDF-11, and Sirt1 artificially decreased by concanavalin A (Con A) in both thymocytes and splenocytes of old mice without cytotoxicity. These results suggest that KRG exerts anti-aging effects by preventing thymic involution, as well as modulating the expression of aging-related genes and immune cell subsets. View Full-Text
Keywords: korean red ginseng; anti-aging; thymic involution; aging-related genes; immune cell population korean red ginseng; anti-aging; thymic involution; aging-related genes; immune cell population
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MDPI and ACS Style

Shin, K.K.; Yi, Y.-S.; Kim, J.K.; Kim, H.; Hossain, M.A.; Kim, J.-H.; Cho, J.Y. Korean Red Ginseng Plays an Anti-Aging Role by Modulating Expression of Aging-Related Genes and Immune Cell Subsets. Molecules 2020, 25, 1492.

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