Understanding the molecular mechanisms that contribute to the accelerated development of the diseases of aging is essential for healthy aging. Over the past 10 years, substantial evidence supports the notion that altered mitochondrial function and metabolic dysregulation play key roles. In this competitive renewal grant application of my first R01 as an independent PI, our overall goal is to identify how altered metabolism contributes to the diseases of aging and aging itself. We have made significant progress towards understanding how acyl-CoA species derived from metabolism induce protein modifications, and how mitochondrial sirtuin 5 removes them as a layer of metabolic control. Our body of work in the first 5-year funding period defines a new paradigm of protein acylation and deacylation, and identifies SIRT5 as a regulator of metabolism and nutrient homeostasis. In the course of these studies, we made the unexpected discovery that SIRT5 levels are physiologically regulated during normal cell cycle progression, and its absence leads to altered cell cycle control. This exciting finding identifies a long-sought-after condition under which sirtuin levels are controlled and is positioned to reveal the underlying biological role of this emerging regulator of aging. In this proposal, we will build upon these exciting preliminary data and focus on the following Specific Aims:
Aim 1) interrogate the regulation of SIRT5 protein during cell cycle progression;
Aim 2) determine how SIRT5 activity influences nutrient sensing;
Aim 3) identify the physiological role of SIRT5 in skeletal muscle stem cells. Together, these studies combine an innovative conceptual framework and a comprehensive experimental design to determine the key biological role of SIRT5 in controlling specific nutrient-sensing responses. Furthermore, this study will build a foundation of knowledge to further understand how the metabolic state communicates with the cell cycle, and how loss of this communication contributes to the pathophysiology of aging. Ultimately, these studies will deepen our understanding of emergent, novel metabolic control mechanisms, and have the potential to inform the development of new therapies to maintain healthy aging.

Public Health Relevance

The proposed research is relevant to public health because in the next 50 years, the world's population aged 60 and over will more than triple from 600 million to 2 billion and carries the risk of significant social and economic burden if healthy aging cannot be maintained. Healthy aging can prevent or delay the onset of chronic diseases, and therefore this research proposal addresses an important human health problem aligned with the mission of the NIH.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
Research Project (R01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Cellular Mechanisms in Aging and Development Study Section (CMAD)
Program Officer
Fridell, Yih-Woei
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Duke University
Internal Medicine/Medicine
Schools of Medicine
United States
Zip Code
Huynh, Frank K; Hu, Xiaoke; Lin, Zhihong et al. (2018) Loss of sirtuin 4 leads to elevated glucose- and leucine-stimulated insulin levels and accelerated age-induced insulin resistance in multiple murine genetic backgrounds. J Inherit Metab Dis 41:59-72
Trub, Alec G; Hirschey, Matthew D (2018) Reactive Acyl-CoA Species Modify Proteins and Induce Carbon Stress. Trends Biochem Sci 43:369-379
Hershberger, Kathleen A; Abraham, Dennis M; Liu, Juan et al. (2018) Ablation of Sirtuin5 in the postnatal mouse heart results in protein succinylation and normal survival in response to chronic pressure overload. J Biol Chem 293:10630-10645
Rajabi, Nima; Auth, Marina; Troelsen, Kathrin R et al. (2017) Mechanism-Based Inhibitors of the Human Sirtuin 5 Deacylase: Structure-Activity Relationship, Biostructural, and Kinetic Insight. Angew Chem Int Ed Engl 56:14836-14841
Wagner, Gregory R; Bhatt, Dhaval P; O'Connell, Thomas M et al. (2017) A Class of Reactive Acyl-CoA Species Reveals the Non-enzymatic Origins of Protein Acylation. Cell Metab 25:823-837.e8
Anderson, Kristin A; Madsen, Andreas S; Olsen, Christian A et al. (2017) Metabolic control by sirtuins and other enzymes that sense NAD+, NADH, or their ratio. Biochim Biophys Acta Bioenerg 1858:991-998
Anderson, Kristin A; Huynh, Frank K; Fisher-Wellman, Kelsey et al. (2017) SIRT4 Is a Lysine Deacylase that Controls Leucine Metabolism and Insulin Secretion. Cell Metab 25:838-855.e15
Hershberger, Kathleen A; Abraham, Dennis M; Martin, Angelical S et al. (2017) Sirtuin 5 is required for mouse survival in response to cardiac pressure overload. J Biol Chem 292:19767-19781
Hershberger, Kathleen A; Martin, Angelical S; Hirschey, Matthew D (2017) Role of NAD+ and mitochondrial sirtuins in cardiac and renal diseases. Nat Rev Nephrol 13:213-225
Wagner, Gregory R; Hirschey, Matthew D (2017) A Prob(e)able Route to Lysine Acylation. Cell Chem Biol 24:126-128

Showing the most recent 10 out of 28 publications