(HealthDay News) — High intake of dietary advanced glycation end products (AGEs), which have been linked to Alzheimer’s disease and metabolic syndrome, are associated with cognitive and motor deficits and insulin resistance in mice and humans, according to a study published online February 24 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Weijing Cai, MD, from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, and colleagues fed mice a low-AGE diet, a low-AGE diet supplemented with methyl-glyoxal derivatives (MGs), or a regular diet. The three diets had the same number of calories.

The researchers found that, compared with mice fed the low-AGE diet, older mice fed the MG-supplemented low-AGE diet developed amyloid-β deposits, cognitive and motor deficits, metabolic syndrome, and brain SIRT1 deficiency. In 93 healthy people 60 years and older, high circulating MG levels at baseline were associated with low blood SIRT1 levels, insulin resistance, and declines in cognition over nine months.

“The data identify a specific AGE (MG) as a modifiable risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease and metabolic syndrome, possibly acting via suppressed SIRT1 and other host defenses, to promote chronic oxidant stress and inflammation,” Cai and colleagues conclude.

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