Telomere Abstracts 4

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n-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation and Leukocyte Telomere Length in Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease.
            (Barden et al., 2016) Download
DNA telomere shortening associates with the age-related increase cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. Reducing oxidative stress, could modify telomere erosion during cell replication, and CVD risk in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). The effect of n-3 fatty acids and coenzyme Q10 (CoQ) on telomere length was studied in a double-blind placebo-controlled trial in CKD. Eighty-five CKD patients were randomized to: n-3 fatty acids (4 g); CoQ (200 mg); both supplements; or control (4 g olive oil), daily for 8 weeks. Telomere length was measured in neutrophils and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) at baseline and 8 weeks, with and without correction for cell counts. Main and interactive effects of n-3 fatty acids and CoQ on telomere length were assessed adjusting for baseline values. F₂-isoprostanes were measured as markers of oxidative stress. There was no effect of n-3 fatty acids or CoQ on neutrophil or PBMC telomere length. However, telomere length corrected for neutrophil count was increased after n-3 fatty acids (p = 0.015). Post-intervention plasma F₂-isoprostanes were negative predictors of post-intervention telomere length corrected for neutrophil count (p = 0.025).The effect of n-3 fatty acids to increased telomere length corrected for neutrophil count may relate to reduced oxidative stress and increased clearance of neutrophils with shorter telomeres from the circulation. This may be a novel mechanism of modifying CVD risk in CKD patients.

Omega-3 fatty acids, oxidative stress, and leukocyte telomere length: A randomized controlled trial.
            (Kiecolt-Glaser et al., 2013) Download
Shorter telomeres have been associated with poor health behaviors, age-related diseases, and early mortality. Telomere length is regulated by the enzyme telomerase, and is linked to exposure to proinflammatory cytokines and oxidative stress. In our recent randomized controlled trial, omega-3 (n-3) polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) supplementation lowered the concentration of serum proinflammatory cytokines. This study assessed whether n-3 PUFA supplementation also affected leukocyte telomere length, telomerase, and oxidative stress. In addition to testing for group differences, changes in the continuous n-6:n-3 PUFA ratio were assessed to account for individual differences in adherence, absorption, and metabolism. The double-blind four-month trial included 106 healthy sedentary overweight middle-aged and older adults who received (1) 2.5g/day n-3 PUFAs, (2) l.25g/day n-3 PUFAs, or (3) placebo capsules that mirrored the proportions of fatty acids in the typical American diet. Supplementation significantly lowered oxidative stress as measured by F2-isoprostanes (p=0.02). The estimated geometric mean log-F2-isoprostanes values were 15% lower in the two supplemented groups compared to placebo. Although group differences for telomerase and telomere length were nonsignificant, changes in the n-6:n-3 PUFA plasma ratios helped clarify the intervention's impact: telomere length increased with decreasing n-6:n-3 ratios, p=0.02. The data suggest that lower n-6:n-3 PUFA ratios can impact cell aging. The triad of inflammation, oxidative stress, and immune cell aging represents important pre-disease mechanisms that may be ameliorated through nutritional interventions. This translational research broadens our understanding of the potential impact of the n-6:n-3 PUFA balance. ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00385723.

Plasma vitamin D biomarkers and leukocyte telomere length.
            (Liu et al., 2013) Download
Vitamin D may reduce telomere shortening through anti-inflammatory and anti-cell proliferation mechanisms. In the present study, we examined the association between vitamin D and relative leukocyte telomere length by using both plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) and 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (1,25(OH)2D) biomarkers. Vitamin D biomarker levels and leukocyte telomere length were measured using plasma samples collected in 1989-1990 from participants of the Nurses' Health Study, a study of nurses from 11 US states. In total, 1,424 participants had their 25(OH)D levels assessed and 837 had their 1,25(OH)2D levels assessed. Genotyping was performed on 480 participants on 12 single nucleotide polymorphisms in vitamin D-related genes. Linear and logistic regression models were used. Higher 25(OH)D levels were significantly associated with longer telomere length (P for trend = 0.05), and the odds ratio increased from 1.07 (P = 0.65) when comparing the second lowest quartile of 25(OH)D with the lowest to 1.59 (P = 0.01) when comparing the highest quartile with the lowest. Vitamin D-related single nucleotide polymorphisms and 1,25(OH)2D levels were not significantly associated with telomere length. Total calcium intake significantly modified the association between 25(OH)D and telomere length (P for interaction = 0.05). Higher plasma 25(OH)D levels may be associated with longer telomeres, and this association may be modified by calcium intake.


 

gamma-Tocotrienol prevents oxidative stress-induced telomere shortening in human fibroblasts derived from different aged individuals.
            (Makpol et al., 2010) Download
The effects of palm gamma-tocotrienol (GGT) on oxidative stress-induced cellular ageing was investigated in normal human skin fibroblast cell lines derived from different age groups; young (21-year-old, YF), middle (40-year-old, MF) and old (68-year-old, OF). Fibroblast cells were treated with gamma-tocotrienol for 24 hours before or after incubation with IC50 dose of H2O2 for 2 hours. Changes in cell viability, telomere length and telomerase activity were assessed using the MTS assay (Promega, USA), Southern blot analysis and telomere repeat amplification protocol respectively. Results showed that treatment with different concentrations of gamma-tocotrienol increased fibroblasts viability with optimum dose of 80 microM for YF and 40 microM for both MF and OF. At higher concentrations, gamma-tocotrienol treatment caused marked decrease in cell viability with IC50 value of 200 microM (YF), 300 microM (MF) and 100 microM (OF). Exposure to H2O2 decreased cell viability in dose dependent manner, shortened telomere length and reduced telomerase activity in all age groups. The IC50 of H2O2 was found to be; YF (700 microM), MF (400 microM) and OF (100 microM). Results showed that viability increased significantly (p < 0.05) when cells were treated with 80 microM and 40 microM gamma-tocotrienol prior or after H2O2-induced oxidative stress in all age groups. In YF and OF, pretreatment with gamma-tocotrienol prevented shortening of telomere length and reduction in telomerase activity. In MF, telomerase activity increased while no changes in telomere length was observed. However, post-treatment of gamma-tocotrienol did not exert any significant effects on telomere length and telomerase activity. Thus, these data suggest that gamma-tocotrienol protects against oxidative stress-induced cellular ageing by modulating the telomere length possibly via telomerase.

Tocotrienol-rich fraction prevents cell cycle arrest and elongates telomere length in senescent human diploid fibroblasts.
            (Makpol et al., 2011) Download
This study determined the molecular mechanisms of tocotrienol-rich fraction (TRF) in preventing cellular senescence of human diploid fibroblasts (HDFs). Primary culture of HDFs at various passages were incubated with 0.5 mg/mL TRF for 24 h. Telomere shortening with decreased telomerase activity was observed in senescent HDFs while the levels of damaged DNA and number of cells in G(0)/G(1) phase were increased and S phase cells were decreased. Incubation with TRF reversed the morphology of senescent HDFs to resemble that of young cells with decreased activity of SA-β-gal, damaged DNA, and cells in G(0)/G(1) phase while cells in the S phase were increased. Elongated telomere length and restoration of telomerase activity were observed in TRF-treated senescent HDFs. These findings confirmed the ability of tocotrienol-rich fraction in preventing HDFs cellular ageing by restoring telomere length and telomerase activity, reducing damaged DNA, and reversing cell cycle arrest associated with senescence.

Association between leukocyte telomere length and serum carotenoid in US adults.
            (Min and Min, 2016) Download
PURPOSE:  Telomere length is a biomarker for aging. It is known that oxidative stress can accelerate telomere shortening, whereas antioxidants can delay their shortening. Carotenoids as antioxidants are favorably associated with health- and aging-related diseases caused by oxidative stress, but their association with telomere length is less certain. We investigated the association between blood carotenoid levels and leukocyte telomere length in a representative sample of US adults. METHODS:  We analyzed 3660 participants aged 20 years and older in the 1999-2002 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. The levels of carotenoids-alpha-carotene, beta-carotene (trans + cis), beta-cryptoxanthin, combined lutein/zeaxanthin, and trans-lycopene-were measured using high-performance liquid chromatography. The leukocyte telomere length (T/S ratio) was assayed using the quantitative polymerase chain reaction method. RESULTS:  A doubling of blood alpha-carotene, beta-carotene (trans + cis), and beta-cryptoxanthin was associated with approximately 2 % longer telomeres. Compared with the lowest carotenoid quartile of alpha-carotene, beta-carotene (trans + cis), and beta-cryptoxanthin, telomere length for adults with the highest quartiles was significantly increased by 5-8 %. CONCLUSION:  We found that increasing levels of blood carotenoid were significantly associated with longer leukocyte telomeres in US adults. High intake of carotenoid-rich food may play a role in protecting telomeres and regulating telomere length.

Effect of comprehensive lifestyle changes on telomerase activity and telomere length in men with biopsy-proven low-risk prostate cancer: 5-year follow-up of a descriptive pilot study.
            (Ornish et al., 2013) Download
BACKGROUND:  Telomere shortness in human beings is a prognostic marker of ageing, disease, and premature morbidity. We previously found an association between 3 months of comprehensive lifestyle changes and increased telomerase activity in human immune-system cells. We followed up participants to investigate long-term effects. METHODS:  This follow-up study compared ten men and 25 external controls who had biopsy-proven low-risk prostate cancer and had chosen to undergo active surveillance. Eligible participants were enrolled between 2003 and 2007 from previous studies and selected according to the same criteria. Men in the intervention group followed a programme of comprehensive lifestyle changes (diet, activity, stress management, and social support), and the men in the control group underwent active surveillance alone. We took blood samples at 5 years and compared relative telomere length and telomerase enzymatic activity per viable cell with those at baseline, and assessed their relation to the degree of lifestyle changes. FINDINGS:  Relative telomere length increased from baseline by a median of 0·06 telomere to single-copy gene ratio (T/S)units (IQR-0·05 to 0·11) in the lifestyle intervention group, but decreased in the control group (-0·03 T/S units, -0·05 to 0·03, difference p=0·03). When data from the two groups were combined, adherence to lifestyle changes was significantly associated with relative telomere length after adjustment for age and the length of follow-up (for each percentage point increase in lifestyle adherence score, T/S units increased by 0·07, 95% CI 0·02-0·12, p=0·005). At 5 years, telomerase activity had decreased from baseline by 0·25 (-2·25 to 2·23) units in the lifestyle intervention group, and by 1·08 (-3·25 to 1·86) units in the control group (p=0·64), and was not associated with adherence to lifestyle changes (relative risk 0·93, 95% CI 0·72-1·20, p=0·57). INTERPRETATION:  Our comprehensive lifestyle intervention was associated with increases in relative telomere length after 5 years of follow-up, compared with controls, in this small pilot study. Larger randomised controlled trials are warranted to confirm this finding. FUNDING:  US Department of Defense, NIH/NCI, Furlotti Family Foundation, Bahna Foundation, DeJoria Foundation, Walton Family Foundation, Resnick Foundation, Greenbaum Foundation, Natwin Foundation, Safeway Foundation, Prostate Cancer Foundation.

The role of telomeres and vitamin D in cellular aging and age-related diseases.
            (Pusceddu et al., 2015) Download
Aging is a complex biological process characterized by a progressive decline of organ functions leading to an increased risk of age-associated diseases and death. Decades of intensive research have identified a range of molecular and biochemical pathways contributing to aging. However, many aspects regarding the regulation and interplay of these pathways are insufficiently understood. Telomere dysfunction and genomic instability appear to be of critical importance for aging at a cellular level. For example, age-related diseases and premature aging syndromes are frequently associated with telomere shortening. Telomeres are repetitive nucleotide sequences that together with the associated sheltrin complex protect the ends of chromosomes and maintain genomic stability. Recent studies suggest that micronutrients, such as vitamin D, folate and vitamin B12, are involved in telomere biology and cellular aging. In particular, vitamin D is important for a range of vital cellular processes including cellular differentiation, proliferation and apoptosis. As a result of the multiple functions of vitamin D it has been speculated that vitamin D might play a role in telomere biology and genomic stability. Here we review existing knowledge about the link between telomere biology and cellular aging with a focus on the role of vitamin D. We searched the literature up to November 2014 for human studies, animal models and in vitro experiments that addressed this topic.


 

Prospective study of telomere length and LINE-1 methylation in peripheral blood cells: the role of B vitamins supplementation.
            (Pusceddu et al., 2016) Download
PURPOSE:  Deficiencies of folate, vitamins B12 and D are common age-related conditions. Vitamin B12 and folate are necessary for DNA methylation. Telomeres appear to be regulated by DNA methylation. Here, we study the effect of B vitamins supplementation on telomere length and global DNA methylation in a prospective study. METHODS:  In total, 60 elderly subjects were supplemented for 1 year with either vitamin B12, B6, folate, vitamin D and calcium (group A n = 31) or only vitamin D and calcium (group B n = 29). LINE-1 methylation, relative telomere length (T/S), vitamin B12, folate, homocysteine (tHcy) , 5-methyltetrahydrofolate (5-methylTHF), S-adenosylhomocysteine (SAH), S-adenosylmethionine (SAM), cystathionine and vitamin D were quantified before and after supplementation. RESULTS:  At baseline, tHcy was high, vitamin D was low, and T/S did not differ between groups A and B. Vitamin supplementation increased LINE-1 methylation in group A at site 317 but reduced LINE-1 methylation in group B at site 327. There was no correlation between T/S and LINE-1 methylation at baseline. Multiple backward regression analysis revealed baseline tHcy and 5-methylTHF are significant predictors of T/S. After supplementation in group B but not in group A, LINE-1 methylation correlated inversely with T/S, and LINE-1 methylation variation was an independent predictor of T/S variation. B vitamins decreased tHcy significantly in group A. Multiple backward regression analysis showed 5-methylTHF in group A and tHcy in group B were significant predictors for LINE-1 methylation. At baseline, the lower LINE-1 methylation observed in subjects with 5-methylTHF >10 nmol/l was in agreement with a reduced methyl group transfer due to a lower SAM formation. In group B, an increase in telomere length was correlated with lower LINE-1 methylation. Subjects with hyperhomocysteinemia >12 µmol/L had compared to those with normal tHcy a reduced LINE-1 methylation accompanied by a higher SAM and SAH (that inhibits demethylation of SAM) as well as lower 5-methylTHF. Additionally, subjects with tHcy > 12 µmol/L had longer telomeres when compared with subjects having tHcy < 12 µmol/L. CONCLUSIONS:  The results suggest a possible effect of B vitamins for telomere biology in blood cells. Suboptimal B vitamins status and hyperhomocysteinemia are associated with altered DNA methylation and telomere length. These data have to be confirmed in future studies.


 

Association between higher plasma lutein, zeaxanthin, and vitamin C concentrations and longer telomere length: results of the Austrian Stroke Prevention Study.
            (Sen et al., 2014) Download
OBJECTIVES:  To examine the association between plasma concentrations of antioxidative micronutrients and leukocyte telomere length (LTL) in elderly adults. DESIGN:  Cross-sectional cohort study. SETTING:  Austrian Stroke Prevention Study, a population-based cohort study on brain aging. PARTICIPANTS:  Individuals with a mean age of 66 ± 7 (n = 786; 58% female). MEASUREMENTS:  Concentrations of vitamin C, lutein, zeaxanthin, β-cryptoxanthin, canthaxanthin, lycopene, α- and γ-tocopherol, α- and β-carotene, and retinol in plasma, advanced oxidation protein products as a measure of oxidative stress in serum, and LTL were measured. Vitamins and carotenoids were measured using high-performance liquid chromatography, advanced oxidation protein products using spectrophotometry, and telomere length using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. RESULTS:  Multiple linear regression analyses with adjustment for age and sex demonstrated that higher lutein, zeaxanthin, and vitamin C concentrations were strongly associated with longer telomere length. The associations were independent of body mass index, maximum oxygen uptake, and vascular risk factors and were not mediated by advanced oxidation protein products content. CONCLUSION:  This study provides first evidence that higher lutein, zeaxanthin, and vitamin C concentrations in plasma are associated with longer LTL in normal elderly persons and suggest a protective role of these vitamins in telomere maintenance.

Leukocyte Telomere Length is Associated With Serum Vitamin B12 and Homocysteine Levels in Older Adults With the Presence of Systemic Inflammation.
            (Shin and Baik, 2016) Download
Folate, vitamin B12, and homocysteine (HCY) are involved in the metabolism of nucleic acid precursors and it has been hypothesized that they also influence telomere length, a biomarker of aging. However, previous studies have reported inconsistent findings, and data for older adults are limited. Our study aimed to evaluate associations between leukocyte telomere length (LTL) and serum folate, vitamin B12, and HCY levels among adults aged 55 years and over. In a cross-sectional study in 798 men and women aged 55-79 years, serum folate, vitamin B12, and HCY levels were measured using chemiluminescent immunometric assays, and relative LTL was assessed using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. To evaluate associations between LTL and serum folate, vitamin B12, and HCY levels, multiple linear regression models were used. In multiple models adjusted for age, sex, serum high sensitive C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) levels, and other potential confounding factors, we found no association between LTL and serum folate, vitamin B12, and HCY levels. However, we did find a significant inverse association between HCY levels and LTL in participants with serum hs-CRP levels of ≥ 2 mg/L (p < 0.05). Moreover, there was a trend toward an association between HCY and vitamin B12 levels in these individuals (p = 0.08). In those with serum hs-CRP levels of < 2 mg/L, HCY was inversely associated with vitamin B12 levels (p < 0.001) and had no association with LTL. Our findings suggest that increased serum HCY levels, when combined with the presence of systemic inflammation, may play a role in accelerating biological aging.

Increased telomerase activity and vitamin D supplementation in overweight African Americans.
            (Zhu et al., 2012) Download
OBJECTIVE:  We aimed to investigate whether vitamin D supplementation modulates peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) telomerase activity in overweight African Americans. DESIGN:  A double blind, randomized and placebo-controlled clinical trial (#NCT01141192) was recently conducted. SUBJECTS AND METHODS:  African-American adults were randomly assigned to either the placebo, or the vitamin D group (60,000 IU per month (equivalent to ~2000 IU per day) oral vitamin D3 supplementation). Fresh PBMCs were collected from 37 subjects (18 in the placebo group and 19 in the vitamin D group), both at baseline and 16 weeks. PBMC telomerase activity was measured by the telomeric repeat amplification protocol. RESULTS:  Serum 25 hydroxyvitamin D levels increased from 40.7±15.7 at baseline to 48.1±17.5 nmol l(-1) at posttest (P=0.004) in the placebo group, and from 35.4±11.3 at baseline to 103.7±31.5 nmol l(-1) at posttests (P<0.0001) in the vitamin D group. In the vitamin D group, PBMC telomerase activity increased by 19.2% from baseline (1.56±0.29 absorbance reading unit (AU)) to posttest (1.86±0.42 AU, P<0.0001). The significance persisted after controlling for age, sex and body mass index (P=0.039). PBMC telomerase activity in the placebo group did not change from baseline (1.43±0.26 AU) to posttest (1.46±0.27 AU, P=0.157). CONCLUSION:  Vitamin D supplementation significantly increased PBMC telomerase activity in overweight African Americans. Our data suggest that vitamin D may improve telomere maintenance and prevent cell senescence and counteract obesity-induced acceleration of cellular aging.


 

References

Barden, A, et al. (2016), ‘n-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation and Leukocyte Telomere Length in Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease.’, Nutrients, 8 (3), 175. PubMed: 27007392
Kiecolt-Glaser, JK, et al. (2013), ‘Omega-3 fatty acids, oxidative stress, and leukocyte telomere length: A randomized controlled trial.’, Brain Behav Immun, 28 16-24. PubMed: 23010452
Liu, JJ, et al. (2013), ‘Plasma vitamin D biomarkers and leukocyte telomere length.’, Am J Epidemiol, 177 (12), 1411-17. PubMed: 23660800
Makpol, S, et al. (2010), ‘gamma-Tocotrienol prevents oxidative stress-induced telomere shortening in human fibroblasts derived from different aged individuals.’, Oxid Med Cell Longev, 3 (1), 35-43. PubMed: 20716926
Makpol, S, et al. (2011), ‘Tocotrienol-rich fraction prevents cell cycle arrest and elongates telomere length in senescent human diploid fibroblasts.’, J Biomed Biotechnol, 2011 506171. PubMed: 21541185
Min, KB and JY Min (2016), ‘Association between leukocyte telomere length and serum carotenoid in US adults.’, Eur J Nutr, PubMed: 26818530
Ornish, D, et al. (2013), ‘Effect of comprehensive lifestyle changes on telomerase activity and telomere length in men with biopsy-proven low-risk prostate cancer: 5-year follow-up of a descriptive pilot study.’, Lancet Oncol, 14 (11), 1112-20. PubMed: 24051140
Pusceddu, I, et al. (2015), ‘The role of telomeres and vitamin D in cellular aging and age-related diseases.’, Clin Chem Lab Med, 53 (11), 1661-78. PubMed: 25803084
Pusceddu, I, et al. (2016), ‘Prospective study of telomere length and LINE-1 methylation in peripheral blood cells: the role of B vitamins supplementation.’, Eur J Nutr, 55 (5), 1863-73. PubMed: 26293976
Sen, A, et al. (2014), ‘Association between higher plasma lutein, zeaxanthin, and vitamin C concentrations and longer telomere length: results of the Austrian Stroke Prevention Study.’, J Am Geriatr Soc, 62 (2), 222-29. PubMed: 24428184
Shin, C and I Baik (2016), ‘Leukocyte Telomere Length is Associated With Serum Vitamin B12 and Homocysteine Levels in Older Adults With the Presence of Systemic Inflammation.’, Clin Nutr Res, 5 (1), 7-14. PubMed: 26839872
Zhu, H, et al. (2012), ‘Increased telomerase activity and vitamin D supplementation in overweight African Americans.’, Int J Obes (Lond), 36 (6), 805-9. PubMed: 21986705