Resveratrol for age-related health conditions

Mechanism of action of resveratrol revealed in a multi-site NIH study.

Resveratrol is the polyphenolic compound found in red wine and in several plant-based foods. Resveratrol has shown potent biological benefits that mimic the effects of calorie restriction. Resveratrol helps ameliorate the effects of age-related metabolic disorders, and has been widely consumed as a nutritional supplement. It has shown potent anti-aging and anti-diabetogenic properties. Other metabolic benefits of resveratrol include prevention of diet-induced obesity, increase in physical stamina and protection against symptoms of metabolic diseases associated with aging. Resveratrol has been studied extensively for delaying age-related human diseases.

Prior studies suggested that resveratrol health benefits are mediated via direct activation of Sirt1. Later studies showed that resveratrol activates AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), which then leads to activation of Sirt1. A recent NIH study has shown that resveratrol directly inhibits cAMP-specific phosphodiesterase (PDE) and identified Epac1 protein as a key mediator of effects of resveratrol, which then leads to activation of AMPK and Sirt1. In other words, resveratrol activates cAMP signalling pathway which then leads to activation of Sirt1.

Park, S-J, Ahmad F., Philp A. et al, 2012. Resveratrol Ameliorates Aging-Related Metabolic Phenotypes by Inhibiting cAMP Phosphodiesterases. Cell, Volume 148, Issue 3, 421-433,