Research Program. Precision Nutrition and Aging

Nutritional Interventions Group

Group leader: Dr. Rafael de Cabo

Objectives: Our group is focused on understanding basic mechanisms underlying aging processes in order to develop and translate interventions aimed to preserve function late in life, to delay the onset of age-related diseases and to improve healthy life expectancy. The Nutritional Interventions Group focuses on energy restriction-based strategies applied to model organisms to decipher variations in energy demands and cellular energetic metabolism, a fundamental hallmark of the aging process

Dr. Rafael de Cabo

Chief of the Translational Gerontology Branch, National Institute on Aging (NIH) (USA) Associate researcher, IMDEA Food Group leader of the Nutritional Interventions Group

Rafael de Cabo, PhD is currently the chief of the Translational Gerontology Branch at the National Institute on Aging in Baltimore, Maryland. A native of Cordoba, Spain, he received his B.S. from the University of Cordoba, and his Ph.D. in 2000 from the Department of Foods and Nutrition at Purdue University. Upon completion of his graduate education, he trained as a postdoctoral fellow in the Laboratory of Neurosciences at the National Institute on Aging in Baltimore, Maryland. In 2004, he was appointed as a tenure track investigator in the Laboratory of Experimental Gerontology. His group applies both physiological and tissue-specific molecular approaches to investigate effects of nutritional interventions on basic mechanisms of aging and age-related diseases. Research within his unit strives to identify protective mechanisms invoked by caloric restriction and to evaluate the consequences of dietary interventions on lifespan, pathology, and behavioral function. Dr. de Cabo’s research balances the exploration of in vivo rodent, as well as in vitro, paradigms of caloric restriction.



most relevant publications
  • De Cabo R. and Diaz-Ruiz A. A Central Role for the Gasotransmitter H2S in Aging. Cell Metab. 2020 Jan 7;31(1):10-12.
  • Castejón M, Plaza A, Martinez-Romero J, Fernandez-Marcos PJ, Cabo R and Diaz-Ruiz A. Energy Restriction and Colorectal Cancer: A Call for Additional Research. Nutrients. 2020 Jan 1;12(1). pii: E114. Review.
  • Diaz-Ruiz A, Di Francesco A, Carboneau BA, Levan SR, Pearson KJ, Price NL, Ward TM, Bernier M, de Cabo R. and Mercken EM. Benefits of Caloric Restriction in Longevity and Chemical-Induced Tumorigenesis Are Transmitted Independent of NQO1. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2019 Jan 16;74(2):155-162.
  • Diaz-Ruiz A, Lanasa M, Garcia J, Mora H, Fan F, Martin-Montalvo A, Di Francesco A, Calvo-Rubio M, Salvador-Pascual A, Aon MA, Fishbein KW, Pearson KJ, Villalba JM, Navas P, Bernier M. and de Cabo R. Overexpression of CYB5R3 and NQO1, two NAD+ -producing enzymes, mimics aspects of caloric restriction. Aging Cell. 2018 Aug;17(4):e12767.
main research grants

Principal Investigator: Alberto Díaz-Ruiz
Project Title: Estrategias alternativas para extender la longevidad y mejorar la calidad de vida: ciclos de ayuno 4:10.
Date: 2019-2022
Funded by: Talento Program Grant, Madrid Regional Government (2018-T1/BMD-11966)