Inflammaging and Anti-Inflammaging: The Role of Cytokines in Extreme Longevity

Paola Lucia Minciullo, Antonino Catalano*, Giuseppe Mandraffino, Marco Casciaro, Andrea Crucitti, Giuseppe Maltese, Nunziata Morabito, Antonino Lasco, Sebastiano Gangemi, Giorgio Basile

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    306 Citations (Scopus)


    Longevity and aging are two sides of the same coin, as they both derive from the interaction between genetic and environmental factors. Aging is a complex, dynamic biological process characterized by continuous remodeling. One of the most recent theories on aging focuses on immune response, and takes into consideration the activation of subclinical, chronic low-grade inflammation which occurs with aging, named “inflammaging”. Long-lived people, especially centenarians, seem to cope with chronic subclinical inflammation through an anti-inflammatory response, called therefore “anti-inflammaging”. In the present review, we have focused our attention on the contrast between inflammaging and anti-inflammaging systems, by evaluating the role of cytokines and their impact on extreme longevity. Cytokines are the expression of a network involving genes, polymorphisms and environment, and are involved both in inflammation and anti-inflammation. We have described the role of IL-1, IL-2, IL-6, IL-12, IL-15, IL-18, IL-22, IL-23, TNF-α, IFN-γ as pro-inflammatory cytokines, of IL-1Ra, IL-4, IL-10, TGF-β1 as anti-inflammatory cytokines, and of lipoxin A4 and heat shock proteins as mediators of cytokines. We believe that if inflammaging is a key to understand aging, anti-inflammaging may be one of the secrets of longevity.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1-16
    Number of pages16
    JournalArchivum Immunologiae et Therapiae Experimentalis
    Publication statusAccepted/In press - 12 Dec 2015


    • Aging
    • Anti-inflammaging
    • Cytokine
    • Inflammaging
    • Longevity


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