Dresden 2020 – wissenschaftliches Programm

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BP: Fachverband Biologische Physik

BP 10: Poster III

BP 10.29: Poster

Montag, 16. März 2020, 17:30–19:30, P2/3OG

Exploring theoretical limits for the lifespan of C. elegans dauer larvae under periodic feedingxingyu zhang1,2 and •vasily zaburdaev1,21Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, Erlangen, Germany — 2Max Planck Zentrum für Physik und Medizin, Erlangen, Germany

Extending lifespan of organisms has long been an appealing topic of biological sciences. Recent experimental work demonstrated that the lifespan of C. elegans dauer larvae could be extended by providing them with external ethanol solution as a carbon source. A mathematical model for the simplified metabolic network of the dauer allowed us to explain the lifespan prolongation and two possible mechanisms leading to the death of the worm. The model relates the well-being of the worm to its mitochondria, which can be irreversibly damaged either by starvation or toxic compounds accumulated during metabolism. However, by incorporating two omitted but important mechanism into the model, namely degradation of toxic compounds and regeneration of mitochondria, we can extend the survival of dauers even further by choosing an optimal feeding protocol. Thus, modified model reproduces the experimental observation when the feeding ethanol concentration stays constant in time. However, when the feeding ethanol concentration varies as a sinusoidal function, the model gives rise to solutions where the worm lives forever. Detailed analysis of the model suggests that large amplitude and moderate frequency of the periodic feeding give better chances for the worm to have an infinite lifespan, which we now plan to test experimentally.

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