Study of frailty biomarkers in the elderly
Spain (IFMSA-SPAIN)-University of Valencia, Valencia
Phisiology department, Facultad de Medicina de la Universidad de Valencia, Avenida Blasco Ibañez, 46010 Valencia, Spain.
Pascual Medina Beso
Ana Lloret Allañiz
Required: English Accepted: Spanish, Italian
4 weeks
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Type of Research Project
- Basic science
What is the background of the project?
Our group has been concerned with the study of ageing for over twenty years. Our major aim now is identifying longevity-related genes, finding ways of upregulating these genes by physiological, nutritional, and pharmacological intervention and determining how to promote healthy ageing. The free radical theory of ageing provided an intellectual framework for many laboratories working on ageing. Data from our own laboratory showed that oxidative stress does not correlate with age, especially in the geriatric population, but rather with the frailty state. This has led us to postulate the free radical theory of frailty in which frailty is associated with oxidative stress, but age itself is not. In this particular project, our laboratory is focused on the study of biomarkers of frailty in the elderly.
What is the aim of the project?
Our goal is to identify frailty biomarkers in order to find adaptations and improvements in the frailty of the elderly in order to prevent the disease.
What techniques and methods are used?
Firstly, once we have obtained and received in our lab the human samples form the patients that were chosen to take part in this study, we will analyse them by sing different techniques. In this project we will use inmunohistochemic techniques, Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) and Flow cytometry, in order to identify frailty biomarkers (from the human samples previously taken). Then, to analyse and compare our results we will use the Confocal microscopy. After that, the student we will be able to develope the appropiate statistical study by using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) program (under supervision, too).
What is the role of the student?
- The student will observe the practical experiments but will be highly involved in the analysis of the results
What are the tasks expected to be accomplished by the student?
Firstly, the student will learn the following Molecular Biology Laboratory techniques: - Inmunohistochemic techniques - How to perform a Polymrase Chain Reaction - Flow Cytometry The student will be able to become familiar with this techniques in this specific case of identifyng frailty biomarkers, as well as other biomolecular mechanisms involved in the process of cell aging. Then, the student will learn and be able to analyse by him/herself using confocal microscopy. Finally, the student will develope a sttistic study using the SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences) program.
Will there be any theoretical teaching provided (preliminary readings, lectures, courses, seminars etc)
Yes, we will provide during the first week research papers and bibliography referred to the topic, that will help the student to understand the research project. These reseach papers will be provided by the tutor of the project.
What is expected from the student at the end of the research exchange? What will be the general outcome of the student?
- No specific outcome is expected
What skills are required of the student? Is there any special knowledge or a certain level of studies needed?
Meticulous and detail-oriented. Subjects passed: Biology, Chemistry and Medical Physiology.
Are there any legal limitations in the student’s involvement
Type of students accepted
This project accepts:
- Medical students
- Graduated students (less than 6 months)
- Viña J; Borras C; Gomez-Cabrera MC. A free radical theory of frailty. Free Radic Biol Med. 2018;20;124:358-363. Published 2018 Jun 26. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.
- Viña J. Free radical theory of frailty: molecular mechanisms of frailty resulting from oxidative stress. Innov Aging. 2018;2(Suppl 1):219–220. Published 2018 Nov 11. doi:10.1093/geroni/igy023.809