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Recruiting adaptive cellular stress responses for successful brain ageing

Abstract | Successful ageing is determined in part by genetic background, but also
by experiential factors associated with lifestyle and culture. Dietary, behavioural
and pharmacological interventions have been identified as potential means to
slow brain ageing and forestall neurodegenerative disease. Many of these
interventions recruit adaptive cellular stress responses to strengthen neuronal
networks and enhance plasticity. In this Science and Society article, we describe
several determinants of healthy and pathological brain ageing, with insights into
how these processes are accelerated or prevented. We also describe the
mechanisms underlying the neuroprotective actions of exercise and nutritional
interventions, with the goal of recruiting these molecular targets for the treatment
and prevention of neurodegenerative disease.