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5-demethoxyubiquinone hydroxylase, mitochondrial precursor (EC (DMQ hydroxylase) (Timing protein clk-1 homolog) (Ubiquinone biosynthesis monooxygenase COQ7)


Reduction in the levels of CoQ biosynthetic proteins is related to an increase in lifespan without evidence of hepatic mitohormesis.

Mitohormesis is an adaptive response induced by a mild mitochondrial stress that promotes longevity and metabolic health in different organisms. This mechanism has been proposed as the cause of the increase in the survival in Coq7 (Mclk1 ) mice, which show hepatic reduction of COQ7, early mitochondrial dysfunction and increased oxidative stress. Our study shows that the lack of COQ9 in Coq9 mice triggers the reduction of COQ7, COQ6 and COQ5, which results in an increase in life expectancy. However, our results reveal that the hepatic CoQ levels are not decreased and, therefore, neither mitochondrial dysfunction or increased oxidative stress are observed in liver of Coq9 mice. These data point out the tissue specific differences in CoQ biosynthesis. Moreover, our results suggest that the effect of reduced levels of COQ7 on the increased survival in Coq9 mice may be due to mitochondrial mechanisms in non-liver tissues or to other unknown mechanisms.

MeSH Terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants
  • Female
  • Longevity
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Mitochondria, Liver
  • Ubiquinone

Gene expression differences in relation to age and social environment in queen and worker bumble bees.

Eusocial insects provide special insights into the genetic pathways influencing aging because of their long-lived queens and flexible aging schedules. Using qRT-PCR in the primitively eusocial bumble bee Bombus terrestris (Linnaeus), we investigated expression levels of four candidate genes associated with taxonomically widespread age-related pathways (coenzyme Q biosynthesis protein 7, COQ7; DNA methyltransferase 3, Dnmt3; foraging, for; and vitellogenin, vg). In Experiment 1, we tested how expression changes with queen relative age and productivity. We found a significant age-related increase in COQ7 expression in queen ovary. In brain, all four genes showed higher expression with increasing female (queen plus worker) production, with this relationship strengthening as queen age increased, suggesting a link with the positive association of fecundity and longevity found in eusocial insect queens. In Experiment 2, we tested effects of relative age and social environment (worker removal) in foundress queens and effects of age and reproductive status in workers. In this experiment, workerless queens showed significantly higher for expression in brain, as predicted if downregulation of for is associated with the cessation of foraging by foundress queens following worker emergence. Workers showed a significant age-related increase in Dnmt3 expression in fat body, suggesting a novel association between aging and methylation in B. terrestris. Ovary activation was associated with significantly higher vg expression in fat body and, in younger workers, in brain, consistent with vitellogenin's ancestral role in regulating egg production. Overall, our findings reveal a mixture of novel and conserved features in age-related genetic pathways under primitive eusociality.

MeSH Terms

  • Aging
  • Animals
  • Bees
  • DNA (Cytosine-5-)-Methyltransferases
  • Female
  • Gene Expression
  • Social Environment
  • Ubiquinone
  • Vitellogenins


  • Aging
  • DNA methylation
  • Epigenetics
  • Gene expression
  • Social environment
  • Social insect