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"Supermice" run faster, live longer.

Scientists in Cleveland have created what is being touted in the media as the world's first "supermice." * The genetically modified rodents are literally stronger, faster, and "better" than their normal counterparts. They live longer than control mice, are more active, eat more, and weigh less. They're capable of running up to 6 kilometers at a speed of 20 meters per minute; 30 times farther than ordinary mice.

This remarkable transformation is all the more amazing given that it's due to a modification to a single metabolism gene shared with humans. The modification causes the mice to express in skeletal muscle an enzyme called phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK-C), which is normally found in liver and adipose tissue and is involved in energy metabolism. This "overexpression" promotes an unusually high concentration of mitochondria and triglycerides, which crowd within muscle cells, providing extraordinary muscular performance.

"Overexpression of PEPCK-C repatterns energy metabolism and leads to greater longevity," researchers concluded.

Reference

* Hakimi P, Yang J, Casadesus G, et al. Over-expression of the cytosolic form of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (GTP) in skeletal muscle repatterns energy metabolism in the mouse. J Biol Chem. 2007 Nov 9;282(45):32844-55.
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Title Annotation:IN THE NEWS
Author:Kiefer, Dale
Publication:Life Extension
Article Type:Report
Date:Apr 1, 2008
Words:190
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