Article

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: 6.77). 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.

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Available from: Lisa A. DeRoo
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    • "Similarly, LTL of women 35–74 years-old reporting multivitamin use was on average 5.1% longer than that of nonusers. When analyzing nonusers separately, increasing intakes of β-carotene, folic acid, magnesium, and vitamins A, E, and C from the customary diet were each associated with longer LTL [32]. Finally, in a population of 786 older (mean age 66 y) subjects from Australia, higher plasma lutein, zeaxanthin, and vitamin C concentrations directly correlated to LTL [33] "
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    • "High free radical levels accelerate telomere shortening sometimes unknowingly be exposed to rapid telomere shortening and accelerated ageing. While studies with iron supplementation among women have showed decreases in TL (Xu et al., 2009), other studies with the human hepatocyte cell line L-02 have shown a slight increase in TL at low concentrations of iron (Liu et al., 2004). "
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    • "Supplementation with vitamin E could also explain the positive effects seen on telomere dynamics in this study. Dietary intakes of vitamin E were associated with longer telomeres in humans (Xu et al., 2009), and in vitro experiments in human skin fibroblasts demonstrate that vitamin E restores telomerase activity and protects against telomere erosion (Makpol et al., 2010). The reduction in telomere loss may be the result of an increased antioxidant capacity. "
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