• Open Access

Lifespan extension in hypomorphic daf-2 mutants of Caenorhabditis elegans is partially mediated by glutathione transferase CeGSTP2-2


Piotr Zimniak, Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology, #638, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, 4301 West Markham Street, Little Rock, AR 72205, USA. Tel.: 501-257-4843; fax: 501-257-4822; e-mail: zimniakpiotr@uams.edu


Electrophilic stress caused by lipid peroxidation products such as 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE) and/or related compounds may contribute to aging. The major mode of 4-HNE metabolism involves glutathione conjugation catalyzed by specialized glutathione transferases. We have previously shown that glutathione transferase CeGSTP2-2, the product of the Caenorhabditis elegans gst-10 gene, has the ability to conjugate 4-HNE, and that its overexpression extends lifespan of C. elegans. We now demonstrate that the expression level of CeGSTP2-2 correlates highly with lifespan in a series of hypomorphic daf-2 mutants of C. elegans. The overexpression of CeGSTP2-2 in daf-2 is abrogated in daf-16; daf-2 mutants, indicating that expression of the gst-10 gene is modulated by insulin-like growth factor signaling. To determine whether the relationship between CeGSTP2-2 and lifespan is causal, we used RNAi to knock down CeGSTP2-2. Treatment with gst-10-specific dsRNA decreased CeGSTP2-2 protein in wild-type N2 and in daf-2 strains to an approximately equal level. The ability to conjugate 4-HNE was similarly decreased by RNAi, suggesting that the increment of that activity in daf-2 over N2 is due largely to the overexpression of CeGSTP2-2. RNAi-mediated knock-down of CeGSTP2-2 led to an increased susceptibility to 4-HNE, paraquat, and heat shock, and to a shortening of lifespan by 13% in both N2 and daf-2 strains. These results indicate that CeGSTP2-2 significantly contributes to the maintenance of the soma, and that this function is augmented in daf-2 mutants concordantly with other longevity assurance genes, probably via insulin-like growth factor signaling.