Withania somnifera Root Extract Enhances Telomerase Activity in the Human HeLa Cell Line

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DOI: 10.4236/abb.2016.74018    25,020 Downloads   32,280 Views  Citations


Aging is a decelerating unidirectional process of life. Shortening of telomeric DNA, the (TTAGGG)n hexanucleotide repeats, which form the caps at the chromosome ends, is implicated to determine the aging process, and more importantly the healthy lifespan itself. Telomerase, a ribonucleoprotein having reverse transcriptase activity, arrests telomere loss through addition of the TTAGGG repeats de novo, to the ends of the chromosome. The telomere/telomerase maintenance is an inevitable necessity to delay aging and for a healthy lifespan. Here, we report the potential of full-spectrum, high concentration Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), an Ayurvedic medicinal herb, root extract to increase telomerase activity. HeLa cells, when treated with various concentrations of Ashwagandha root extract, showed an increase in telomerase activity measured with the established Telomerase Rapid Amplification Protocol (TRAP) assay. Ashwagandha root extract increased telomerase activity with highest enhancement of ~45% at 10 - 50 μg concentration. Thus, Ashwagandha root extract has the anti-aging inducing potential.

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Raguraman, V. and Subramaniam, J. (2016) Withania somnifera Root Extract Enhances Telomerase Activity in the Human HeLa Cell Line. Advances in Bioscience and Biotechnology, 7, 199-204. doi: 10.4236/abb.2016.74018.

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