The role of autophagy in ageing regulation has been suggested based on studies in C. elegans, in which knockdown of the expression of bec-1 (ortholog of the yeast and mammalian autophagy genes ATG6/VPS30 and beclin 1, respectively) shortens lifespan of the daf-2(e1370) mutant C. elegans. However, Beclin1/ATG6 is also known to be involved in other cellular functions in addition to autophagy. In the current study, we knocked down two other autophagy genes, atg-7 and atg-12, in C. elegans using RNAi. We showed that RNAi shortened the lifespan of both wild type and daf-2 mutant C. elegans, providing strong support for a role of autophagy in ageing regulation.
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