The nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans is known to undergo characteristic morphological as well as physiological signs of senescence. Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis shows that alterations also occur in the pattern of the nuclear proteins as a function of age. Non-histone proteins whose level exhibits a steep fall with age are egg-specific and not involved in senescence. However, a distinct set of non-histones accumulates with age and can be considered as senescence markers. Some of these are glycoproteins, as shown by their concanavalin A-binding properties. One age-specific polypeptide, called ‘protein S-28’, was further characterized by peptide mapping and determination of its N-terminal amino acid sequence.

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