Characteristics of Framingham Offspring Participants With Long-lived Parents

Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Archives of Internal Medicine (Impact Factor: 17.33). 03/2007; 167(5):438-44. DOI: 10.1001/archinte.167.5.438
Source: PubMed


Prior research has suggested that delay or avoidance of cardiovascular disease and cardiovascular disease risk factors plays an important role in longevity.
We studied 1697 Framingham Heart Study (FHS) offspring members 30 years or older, whose parents (1) participated in the original FHS cohort and (2) achieved age 85 years or died before January 1, 2005. Offspring participants (mean +/- SD age, 40 +/- 7 years; 51% women) were grouped according to whether neither (n = 705), one (n = 804), or both parents (n = 188) survived to 85 years or older. We examined offspring risk factors at examination cycle 1 (1971-1975) including age, sex, education, cigarette smoking, systolic and diastolic blood pressures, total-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol ratio, body mass index, and Framingham Risk Score. Participants returning for examination cycle 3 (1983-1987; n = 1319) were eligible for inclusion in longitudinal analyses evaluating risk factor progression from baseline to a higher follow-up risk category.
For all factors studied, except body mass index, we observed statistically significant linear trends for lower offspring examination 1 risk factor levels with increasing parental survival category. The mean Framingham Risk Score was most favorable in offspring with both parents surviving to 85 years or older and was progressively worse in those with one or no long-lived parent (0.55, 1.08, and 1.71, respectively; P value for trend, <.001). Longitudinally, offspring of parents who lived longer had lower risk of blood pressure and Framingham Risk Score progression.
Our findings suggest that individuals with long-lived parents have advantageous cardiovascular risk profiles in middle age compared with those whose parents died younger. The risk factor advantage persists over time.

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    • "Since some studies have reported that centenarians and their offspring generally avoid bad lifestyle habits (Galioto et al., 2008; Terry et al., 2007), we examined our study population for smoking habits and alcohol consumption. Interestingly, we found no significant differences between CO, CT and NLO groups with regard to these variables (data not shown), suggesting that the lowest disease prevalence of CO might not depend on a healthier lifestyle. "
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    • "The reasons for this association of age and many cardiometabolic diseases are degenerative processes leading to cellular apoptosis beyond regeneration or repairs (Navarro and Boveris, 2007). There were exceptional examples among the children of long-living parents, suggesting that they had advantageous cardiovascular risk profiles, as reported by the Leiden research program on aging and Framingham offspring study (de Craen et al., 2009; Terry et al., 2007). However, the direction of effect could also be that having cardiometabolic diseases cause premature aging and death (Girndt and Seibert, 2010). "
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    • "It has also been shown that parental longevity relates to carotid atherosclerosis and aortic arterial stiffness in adult Offs [16]. Data from the longitudinal Framingham Heart Study confirm that subjects with long-lived parents have a better cardiovascular risk profile in middle age than those whose parents died younger [17] and a low cardiovascular risk profile appears to contribute to the longevity of centenarians [18]. Furthermore, the Offs of centenarians have a better cardiovascular risk profile than those of parents not enjoying a long life [19]. "
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