mTOR, aging, and cancer: A dangerous link

Zelton Dave Sharp, Paul Hasty

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


mTOR and aging appear to have co-evolved in eukaryotes, suggesting that cancer would be inexorably linked to these fundamental aspects of life. We argue this is a perilous linkage, although there is an opportunity to suppress cancer and aging as Shakespeare said of red kites attacking chickens “as one fell swoop,” which up to now might have seemed fantastical. We review current knowledge concerning the role of mTOR in both aging and cancer and proof of concept results indicating that rapamycin, or similar inhibitors, should be considered for this “down to earth” application. We also discuss the immunosuppression controversy regarding chronic rapamycin use in longevity and cancer prevention and argue that this putative caveat is not supported by available evidence. If we are going to get serious about a looming economic burden of the aging population and their associated diseases (like cancer), we might need to consider approaches that prevent or treat more than one disease at a time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationmTOR Inhibition for Cancer Therapy
Subtitle of host publicationPast, Present and Future
PublisherSpringer-Verlag France
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9782817804927
ISBN (Print)9782817804910
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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