Date of Award

Spring 5-8-2021

Document Type

Honors Thesis



First Advisor

Bernie Wone

Second Advisor

Beate Wone

Third Advisor

Kenneth Renner


PFK-1, aging, muscle, metabolism, assay

Subject Categories

Cellular and Molecular Physiology


The phosphofructokinase-1 (PFK-1) enzyme is important for the catalyzation and regulation of glycolysis, especially in muscle. Investigating age-related changes in PFK-1 activity will provide insights into the metabolism shifts in muscle cells of our muscle aging model. The hawk moth, Manduca sexta, was chosen as the model organism because of its unique endothermic, synchronous flight muscles that are more analogous to vertebrates than invertebrate species. We hypothesized that PFK-1 activity will increase in muscle cells of aged moths due to dysregulation of the mitochondria. This was predicted to change the method of energy production, by hindering oxidative phosphorylation, making glycolysis more necessary. Our results show that there is a decrease in PFK-1 activity in both sexes of hawk moth, and thus a decrease in glycolytic activity, in aged moth muscle. There was also a significant difference in PFK-1 activity between the sexes. Additionally, it was found that there was a nonsignificant difference between day and night samples. This suggests that our hypothesis was incorrect, and the activity of PFK-1 decreases as the muscle cells age (p<0.001). The findings help create a better understanding of metabolism in aging.



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