Endothelial Aging Associated with Oxidative Stress Can Be Modulated by a Healthy Mediterranean Diet
Yubero-Serrano, Elena M.
Endothelial progenitor cell
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Aging is a condition which favors the development of atherosclerosis, which has been associated with a breakdown in repair processes that occurs in response to cell damage. The dysregulation of the biological systems associated with aging are produced partly through damage which accumulates over time. One major source of this injury is oxidative stress, which can impair biological structures and the mechanisms by which they are repaired. These mechanisms are based on the pathogenesis of endothelial dysfunction, which in turn is associated with cardiovascular disease, carcinogenesis and aging. The dependent dysfunction of aging has been correlated with a reduction in the number and/or functional activity of endothelial progenitor cells, which could hinder the repair and regeneration of the endothelium. In addition, aging, inflammation and oxidative stress are endogenous factors that cause telomere shortening, which is dependent on oxidative cell damage. Moreover, telomere length correlates with lifestyle and the consumption of a healthy diet. Thus, diseases associated with aging and age may be caused by the long-term effects of oxidative damage, which are modified by genetic and environmental factors. Considering that diet is a very important source of antioxidants, in this review we will analyze the relationship between oxidative stress, aging, and the mechanisms which may be involved in a higher survival rate and a lower incidence of the diseases associated with aging in populations which follow a healthy diet.