Environmental Factor, August 2009, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
David Sinclair to Present Distinguished Lecture August 11
By Eddy Ball
The 2008-2009 NIEHS Distinguished Lecture Series will conclude August 11 with a talk by Harvard University molecular geneticist David Sinclair, Ph.D. Sinclair's lecture on "Pathways That Control the Pace of Aging and Disease: Prospects for New Medicines" will begin at 11:00 a.m. in Rodbell Auditorium and be hosted by NIEHS Mammalian Aging Group Principal Investigator Xiaoling Li, Ph.D. (http://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/atniehs/labs/lst/mammalian/index.cfm)
Sinclair (http://www.hms.harvard.edu/dms/bbs/fac/sinclair.html) is a professor of Pathology and co-director of the Paul F. Glenn Laboratories for the Biological Mechanisms of Aging at the Harvard University Medical School. Like Li, Sinclair studies the regulatory proteins known as sirtuins. He is especially interested in the interaction between their ortholog in humans, SIRT1, and calorie restriction in regulating mammalian lifespan.
His group has investigated the role of sirtuins in several models, including yeast, C. elegans, mammalian cell culture and rodents. Using an interdisciplinary approach in these studies, his group has applied results to develop engineered small molecules that can activate mammalian sirtuins in vivo, with a view to developing drugs to treat the diseases of aging and promote cell survival and recovery following an injury.
As well as being a leading investigator in his field, Sinclair is also an accomplished communicator of his science. He appeared on the Public Broadcasting Service show Charlie Rose (http://www.charlierose.com/view/interview/150) in 2006 discussing his highly publicized study (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17086191?ordinalpos=5&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum) on the anti-aging red-wine compound resveratrol. His article (http://seedmagazine.com/content/print/the_achilles_heel_of_aging/) in the July 2009 issue of the on-line magazine SEED offers a reader-friendly introduction to his work.