To establish the benefits of NMN given to mice, Wu and colleagues measured thermogenesis, the output of body heat, which correlates to increased cell energy production. Thermogenesis is a biomarker, a biological indicator, of metabolism — the generation of energy through cellular processes that produce the energy packet molecule adenosine triphosphate (ATP). The assessment of metabolism through body heat showed that administering NMN over a 40-week time course increases thermogenesis by about 10%, confirming that the compound improves metabolic function.
NMN Alters Intestinal Bacteria Diversity
Wu and colleagues next measured fecal bacteria composition in mice and found that NMN promotes a healthy gut by improving bacterial composition. Intestinal bacteria health is a biomarker of overall physiological well-being. The Tianjin researchers observed that short-term NMN administration reduced the diversity of bacterial species in the intestine. Notably, several species of healthy gut-associated bacteria species increased in abundance, like Mucispirillum, Colidextribacter, and Candidatus_Saccharimonas. On the other hand, bacteria often found in patients with age-related diseases like Staphylococcus, Corynebacterium, and Paenalcaligenes diminished in prevalence.
Oral Usage of NMN Drives Telomere Extension
Wu and colleagues then measured the length of telomeres in mice and humans. The team found that administering NMN for short time periods increases telomere lengths 20-25% in mice. The researchers also found that taking NMN for short periods of time (90 days) almost doubles the length of telomeres in humans, indicating potentially breakthrough health benefits and lifespan extension effects.