Multivitamin use and telomere length in women

Epidemiology Branch, National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, USA.
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (Impact Factor: 6.92). 04/2009; 89(6):1857-63. DOI: 10.3945/ajcn.2008.26986
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Telomere length may be a marker of biological aging. Multivitamin supplements represent a major source of micronutrients, which may affect telomere length by modulating oxidative stress and chronic inflammation.
The objective was to examine whether multivitamin use is associated with longer telomeres in women.
We performed a cross-sectional analysis of data from 586 early participants (age 35-74 y) in the Sister Study. Multivitamin use and nutrient intakes were assessed with a 146-item food-frequency questionnaire, and relative telomere length of leukocyte DNA was measured by quantitative polymerase chain reaction.
After age and other potential confounders were adjusted for, multivitamin use was associated with longer telomeres. Compared with nonusers, the relative telomere length of leukocyte DNA was on average 5.1% longer among daily multivitamin users (P for trend = 0.002). In the analysis of micronutrients, higher intakes of vitamins C and E from foods were each associated with longer telomeres, even after adjustment for multivitamin use. Furthermore, intakes of both nutrients were associated with telomere length among women who did not take multivitamins.
This study provides the first epidemiologic evidence that multivitamin use is associated with longer telomere length among women.

  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Reproduction is inherently costly. Environmental stressors, such as infection and limited food resources, can compromise investment at each breeding attempt. For example, recent data on captive birds showed that increased reproductive effort accelerates ageing. However, the effects of nutritional status and infection on ageing remain unknown. Telomeres function as protective caps at the ends of eukaryotic chromosomes, and changes in telomere length is a commonly used proxy for ageing. To partially address the mechanisms of ageing following reproduction, we supplemented, medicated or administered a combined treatment to wild blue tits (Cyanistes caeruleus) breeding in central Spain during 2012. The nutritional supplement consisted of two different antioxidants, while the medication was an antimalarial treatment against blood parasites. We evaluated the effect of these manipulations on reproductive success and parasite loads in the first breeding season, and on changes in telomere length between two consecutive breeding seasons. Supplemented birds showed no reduction in blood parasite infections in 2012, although they exhibited higher body mass and fledging success. The antimalarial drugs reduced infections by several parasite species, but this had no effect on fitness parameters. In the following season, telomeres from supplemented birds had shortened less. Altogether, we found that supplementation with antioxidants provided fitness benefits in the short term and reduced telomere loss a year following treatment. Our results provide indirect empirical support for accelerated telomere loss as a cost of reproduction. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Journal of Evolutionary Biology 03/2015; 28(4). DOI:10.1111/jeb.12615 · 3.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Caloric restriction has consistently been shown to extend lifespan and ameliorate aging-related diseases. These effects may be due to diet-induced reactive oxygen species acting to upregulate sirtuins and related protective pathways, which research suggests may be partially inhibited by dietary antioxidant supplementation. Since caloric restriction is not sustainable long-term for most humans, we investigated an alternative dietary approach, intermittent fasting, which is proposed to act on similar biological pathways. We hypothesized that a modified intermittent fasting diet, where participants maintain overall energy balance by alternating between days of fasting (25% of normal caloric intake) and feasting (175% of normal) would increase expression of genes associated with aging and reduce oxidative stress and that these effects would be suppressed by antioxidant supplementation. To assess the tolerability of the diet and to explore effects on biological mechanisms related to aging and metabolism, we recruited a cohort of 24 healthy individuals in a double crossover, double-blinded randomized clinical trial. Study participants underwent two three-week treatment periods: intermittent fasting and intermittent fasting with antioxidant (Vitamins C and E) supplementation. We found strict adherence to study-provided diets and that participants found the diet tolerable, with no adverse clinical findings or weight change. We detected a marginal increase (2.7%) in SIRT3 expression due to the intermittent fasting diet, but no change in expression of other genes or oxidative stress markers analyzed. We also found that intermittent fasting decreased plasma insulin levels (1.01 uU/mL). Although our study suggests that the intermittent fasting dieting paradigm is acceptable in healthy individuals, additional research is needed to further assess the potential benefits and risks.
    Rejuvenation Research 12/2014; 18(2). DOI:10.1089/rej.2014.1624 · 3.93 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Telomere length is indicative of biological age. Shorter telomeres have been associated with several disease and health states. There are inconsistencies throughout the literature amongst relative telomere length measured by quantitative PCR (qPCR) and different extraction methods or kits used. We quantified whole-blood leukocyte telomere length using the telomere to single copy gene (T/S) ratio by qPCR in 20 young (18-25 yrs) men after extracting DNA using three common extraction methods: Lahiri and Nurnberger (high salt) method, PureLink Genomic DNA Mini kit (Life Technologies) and QiaAmp DNA Mini kit (Qiagen). Telomere length differences of DNA extracted from the three extraction methods was assessed by one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA). DNA purity differed between extraction methods used (P = 0.01). Telomere length was impacted by the DNA extraction method used (P = 0.01). Telomeres extracted using the Lahiri and Nurnberger method (mean T/S ratio: 2.43, range: 1.57 - 3.02) and PureLink Genomic DNA Mini Kit (mean T/S ratio: 2.57, range: 2.24 - 2.80) did not differ (P = 0.13). Likewise, QiaAmp and Purelink-extracted telomeres were not statistically different (P = 0.14). The Lahiri-extracted telomeres, however, were significantly shorter than those extracted using the QiaAmp DNA Mini Kit (mean T/S ratio: 2.71, range: 2.32 - 3.02; P = 0.003). DNA purity was associated with telomere length. There are discrepancies between the length of leukocyte telomeres extracted from the same individuals according to the DNA extraction method used. DNA purity could be responsible for the discrepancy in telomere length but this will require validation studies. We recommend using the same DNA extraction kit when quantifying leukocyte telomere length by qPCR or when comparing different cohorts to avoid erroneous associations between telomere length and traits of interest.
    BMC Research Notes 12/2014; 7(1):877. DOI:10.1186/1756-0500-7-877