REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201810.0428.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Oncology & Oncogenics Keywords: amino acids, cancer, energy metabolism, autophagy, apoptosis, glutamine, diabetes type 2.
Online: 18 October 2018 (16:45:01 CEST)
Production of energy is a main task of cancer cells metabolism, since costs of duplicating are enormous. Although energy is derived in cells by dismantling carbon to carbon bonds of any macronutrient, cancer nutritional needs for energetic purposes have been studied primarily as dependent on glycolysis. Since the end of the last century, awareness of dependence of cancer metabolism on amino acids not only for protein syntheses but also for matching energy needs has grown. The roles of specific amino acids, like glutamine, glycine and serine have been explored in different experimental conditions and reviewed. Moreover, there are epidemiological evidences that some amino acids used as supplement for therapeutic reasons (the branched chain ones) may reduce incidence of liver cancer, and some molecular mechanism has been proposed as functional to their protective action. On the contrary, metabolic signature of some pathology connected with increased risk of cancer, like prolonged hyperinsulinemia in insulin resistant patients, is signed by plasma elevated levels of the same branched chain amino acids, posing puzzling questions to clinicians. Most recently, peculiar formulations of amino acids, deeply different if compared to amino acids compositions normally present in foods, have shown the power to master epigenetics slowing growth or driving cancer cells to apoptotic death, while being even beneficial for normal cells and for animals health and life span. In this review, we will analyze and try to disentangle some of the many knots dealing with complexities of amino acids biology and linked to cancer metabolism.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201802.0048.v1
Subject: Biology, Anatomy & Morphology Keywords: Aging, Nutrition, Diet, Muscle atrophy, Body wasting, Food choice
Online: 5 February 2018 (23:43:16 CET)
Inadequate protein intake can impair protein balance and lead to skeletal muscle atrophy, impaired body growth, and functional decline. Foods provide both non-essential (NEAAs) and essential amino acids (EAAs) that may convey different metabolic stimuli to specific organs and tissues. In this study, we sought to evaluate the impact of six diets with various EAA/NEAA blends on body composition and the risk of developing tissue wasting in late middle-aged male mice. Mice consuming NEAA-based diets, although showing increased food and calorie intake, suffered the most severe weight loss. Interestingly, even moderate NEAAs prevalence was able to induce inflammatory catabolic stimuli, generalized body wasting and systemic metabolic alterations. Complete depletion of retroperitoneal white adipose tissue and a severe loss (>75%) of brown adipose tissue were observed together with muscle wasting. Conversely, EAA-based diets induced significant decreases in weight by reducing primarily fat reserves, but improved clinical parameters. Tissue wasting was caused by altered AA quality, independent of reduced nitrogen or caloric intake. Our results indicate that an optimized balance of AA composition is necessary for preserving overall bodily energy status. These findings are particularly relevant in the context of aging and may be exploited for contrasting its negative correlates including body wasting.