In recent years, increasing attention has been given to RNA splicing as a mechanism of interest in aging. RNA splicing is the process of combining intron and exon regions derived from a gene’s DNA sequence into the final RNA sequence transcribed from that gene. Introns are usually dropped, exons are usually included, but this process of combination allows multiple proteins to be derived from one gene.
Characteristic changes in splicing take place with age, such as alterations in the proportions of different proteins produced from the same gene via different combinations of introns and exons. The regulation of splicing becomes more ragged in general, such as by allowing introns into RNA sequences when they should be excluded, and this is thought to contribute to metabolic disarray, cellular senescence, and other manifestations of aging. As for many of the mechanisms implicated in aging, there is as yet no robust placement of splicing changes in a chain of cause and consequence. It is unclear as to why exactly splicing runs awry, or the degree to which it contributes to specific higher level manifestations of aging.
The fastest way to achieve this understanding is most likely to
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