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Advancing Age and Telomere Uncapping in Arteries

Posted on May 26, 2013
This news or article is intended for readers with certain scientific knowledge in the field.

Arterial telomere dysfunction may contribute to chronic arterial inflammation by inducing cellular senescence and subsequent senescence-associated inflammation. Though telomere shortening has been associated with arterial aging in humans, age-related telomere uncapping has not been described in non-cultured human tissues and may have substantial prognostic value.

In skeletal muscle feed arteries from 104 younger, middle-aged, and older adults, scientists assessed the potential role of age-related telomere uncapping in arterial inflammation.

Telomere uncapping, measured by p-histone γ-H2A.X, ser139 localized to telomeres (chromatin immunoprecipitation; ChIP) and telomeric repeat binding factor 2 bound to telomeres (ChIP) was greater in arteries from older adults compared with those from younger adults. There was greater tumor suppressor protein p53 (P53)/cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1A (P21)-induced senescence, measured by P53 bound to P21 gene promoter (ChIP), and greater expression of P21, interleukin 8, and monocyte chemotactic protein 1 mRNA (RT-PCR) in arteries from older adults compared with younger adults. Telomere uncapping was a highly influential covariate for the age-group difference in P53/P21-induced senescence.

Despite progressive age-related telomere shortening in human arteries, mean telomere length was not associated with telomere uncapping or P53/P21-induced senescence.

Collectively, these findings demonstrate that advancing age is associated with greater telomere uncapping in arteries, which is linked to P53/P21-induced senescence independent of telomere shortening.

Source: Innovita Research Foundation.

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