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During the ageing process, both senescent and non-senescent cells lose a degree of response to cellular stressors. The upstream causes of this are as yet unclear, but may include changes in genes controlling alternative splicing; a major regulator of gene expression which ensures genomic plasticity. Here, we provide evidence that treatment with novel analogues of the stilbene compound resveratrol is associated not only with restoration of splicing factor expression but also with amelioration of multiple cellular senescence phenotypes in senescent human primary fibroblasts. At present, the precise mechanisms behind these observations are unclear, but may involve both the restoration of a more ‘youthful’ pattern of alternative splicing, and also effects of specific splicing factors on telomere maintenance. We propose therefore that splicing factors, and the upstream drivers of splicing factor expression may prove promising as druggable targets to ameliorate ageing phenotypes and hold promise as anti-degenerative compounds effective in human cells in the future.

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