Is telomere length a biomarker of aging? A review.
ABSTRACT Telomeres, the DNA-protein structures located at the ends of chromosomes, have been proposed to act as a biomarker of aging. In this review, the human evidence that telomere length is a biomarker of aging is evaluated. Although telomere length is implicated in cellular aging, the evidence suggesting telomere length is a biomarker of aging in humans is equivocal. More studies examining the relationships between telomere length and mortality and with measures that decline with "normal" aging in community samples are required. These studies would benefit from longitudinal measures of both telomere length and aging-related parameters.
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ABSTRACT: The old age population is increasing worldwide as well as age related diseases, including neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), which negatively impacts on the health care systems. Aging represents per se a risk factor for AD. Thus, the study and identification of pathways within the biology of aging represent an important end point for the development of novel and effective disease-modifying drugs to treat, delay, or prevent AD. Cellular senescence and telomere shortening represent suitable and promising targets. Several studies show that cellular senescence is tightly interconnected to aging and AD, while the role of telomere dynamic and stability in AD pathogenesis is still unclear. This review will focus on the linking mechanisms between cellular senescence, telomere shortening and AD. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.Ageing Research Reviews 04/2015; 22. DOI:10.1016/j.arr.2015.04.003 · 7.63 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The elderly population is increasing progressively. Along with this increase the number of age related diseases, such as cardiovascular, neurodegenerative diseases, metabolic impairment and cancer, is also on the rise thereby negatively impacting the burden on health care systems. Telomere shortening and dysfunction results in cellular senescence, an irreversible proliferative arrest that has been suggested to promote organismal aging and disabling age-related diseases. Given that telomerase, the enzyme responsible for maintaining telomere lengths, is not expressed at levels sufficient to prevent telomere shortening in most of our cells, telomeres progressively erode with advancing age. Telomerase activation, therefore, might serve as a viable therapeutic strategy to delay the onset of cellular senescence, tissue dysfunction and organismal decline. Here we analyze the more recent findings in telomerase activation as a potential key modulator for human healthspan and longevity.Ageing research reviews 05/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.arr.2013.12.006 · 7.63 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Telomeres (measured as leukocyte telomere length) can be effective and useful biomarkers for general aging status, for age-related disease diagnosis, and for disease status, but they are less effective as predictive biomarkers for patient mortality. Recent work also suggests that we may be able to intervene in this biomarker by re-lengthening telomeres, and that this intervention may have significant clinical benefits. A great deal remains unknown regarding the limits of telomere lengths as clinical biomarkers and the limits of interventions aimed at re-lengthening human telomeres.06/2012; 1(2). DOI:10.1007/s13670-012-0013-6