Department of Toxicology, Hangzhou Normal University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, Zhejiang 311121, China.; Zhejiang Provincial Center for Uterine Cancer Diagnosis and Therapy Research, Hangzhou, Zhejiang 310006, China. Electronic address: [Email]
High sugar content in beverage or food can affect the aging process, and thus natural/artificial sweeteners are widely used as substitutes. However, whether sweeteners have such adverse effects as sugar remains to be clarified. Therefore, in the current study, three sulfa sweeteners, namely, saccharin sodium salt hydrate (SAC2), sodium cyclamate (CYC3) and acesulfame potassium (AceK4) were evaluated for their effects on the lifespan, deposition of lipofuscin, exercise activity, food intake, and intestinal fat deposition (IFD5) of Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans6). It was shown that SAC at 0.3 and 10 mg/mL shortened the lifespan of C. elegans and impaired the exercise capacity, while at other concentrations no significant effects were observed. In contrast, CYC at 0.1, 1 and 10 mg/mL prolonged the lifespan of C. elegans. On the other hand, AceK at 1 mg/mL increased the lifespan of C. elegans, and could decrease both lipofuscin deposition and IFD in a dose-dependent manner. Taken together, these results indicated that although SAC, CYC, and AceK all belong to the sulfa sweeteners, each has distinct effects on different physiological activities associated with aging, at least in C. elegans.