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Progeria

Isoprenylcysteine carboxyl methyltransferase (ICMT)

Mouse and cell culture studies suggest inhibiting ICMT could help treat Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (HGPS), which causes premature aging. In a mouse model for HGPS, expression of an Icmt variant with decreased function improved gait and increased both body weight and survival compared with expression of wild-type Icmt. In fibroblasts from patients with HGPS, ICMT-targeting small hairpin RNA or a competitive ICMT inhibitor delayed senescence and increased proliferation compared with control shRNA or vehicle. Next steps include testing Icmt knockdown or ICMT inhibitors in additional mouse models for progeria.

SciBX 6(22); doi:10.1038/scibx.2013.552
Published online June 6, 2013

Patent and licensing status undisclosed

Ibrahim, M.X. et al. Science;
published online May 16, 2013;
doi:10.1126/science.1238880
Contact: Martin O. Bergo, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden
e-mail:
martin.bergo@gu.se