Date of Award




First Advisor

Dr. Erin Johnson


The global obesity pandemic coupled with ever-growing life expectancies equates to hundreds of millions of individuals with potentially longer but not healthier lives. Aging is one of the risk factors for numerous maladies such as metabolic dis- order and frailty, which are exacerbated under obesity. Thus, therapeutic approaches that address obesity to ultimately improve afected individuals’ quality of life and extend their lifespan are needed. We previously reported that the every other day (EOD) fasting initiated late-life improved metabolic, musculoskeletal, and cognitive endpoints in standard rodent diet-fed mice. In the present study, using the same dietary intervention methodology, we tested if 2.5 months of EOD fasting could improve metabolic, physiological, and cognitive endpoints in mice after an 18 month obesogenic high-fat diet (HFD). The positive efects of EOD fasting were generally consistent across the endpoints; EOD fasting decreased total body mass, maintained more %lean mass, improved glucose tol- erance and utilization, and improved neuromuscu- lar function. In contrast to our previous study, grip strength, hippocampal-dependent memory, and renal hydrogen sulfde (H2S) production were not improved by the HFD EOD fasting. Thus, efcacy for late- life initiated intermittent fasting to improve specifc frailty markers may be partially dependent on nutritional compositions of the diet.

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