The aging process induces a plethora of changes in the body including alterations in hormonal regulation and metabolism in various organs including the heart. Aging is associated with marked increase in the vulnerability of the heart to ischemia-reperfusion injury. Furthermore, it significantly hampers the development of adaptive response to various forms of conditioning stimuli (pre/post/remote conditioning). Aging significantly impairs the activation of signaling pathways that mediate preconditioning-induced cardioprotection. It possibly impairs the uptake and release of adenosine, decreases the number of adenosine transporter sites and down-regulates the transcription of adenosine receptors in the myocardium to attenuate adenosine- mediated cardioprotection. Furthermore, aging decreases the expression of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma co-activator 1-alpha (PGC-1a) and subsequent transcription of catalase enzyme which subsequently increases the oxidative stress and decreases the responsiveness to preconditioning stimuli in the senescent diabetic hearts. In addition, in the aged rat hearts, the conditioning stimulus fails to phosphorylate Akt kinase that is required for mediating cardioprotective signaling in the heart. Moreover, aging increases the concentration of Na+ and K+, connexin expression and caveolin abundance in the myocardium and increases the susceptibility to ischemia-reperfusion injury. In addition, aging also reduces the responsiveness to conditioning stimuli possibly due to reduced kinase signaling and reduced STAT-3 phosphorylation. However, aging is associated with an increase in MKP-1 phosphorylation, which dephosphorylates (deactivates) mitogen activated protein kinase that is involved in cardioprotective signaling. The present review describes aging as one of the major confounding factors in attenuating remote ischemic preconditioninginduced cardioprotection along with the possible mechanisms.
MECHANISMS RESPONSIBLE FOR AN INCREASE IN ISCHEMIC INJURY DUE TO AGING
MECHANISM RESPONSIBLE FOR REDUCED EFFECTIVENESS OF DIFFERENT CONDITIONING STIMULI