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Title: Longer Leukocyte Telomeres Are Associated with Ultra-Endurance Exercise Independent of Cardiovascular Risk Factors
Authors: Denham, J.
Nelson, Christopher P.
O'Brien, B. J.
Nankervis, S. A.
Denniff, Matthew
Harvey, J. T.
Marques, F. Z.
Codd, Veryan
Zukowska-Szczechowska, E.
Samani, Nilesh J.
Tomaszewski, Maciej
Charchar, Fadi J.
First Published: 31-Jul-2013
Publisher: Public Library of Science
Citation: PLoS One, 2013, 8 (7), e69377
Abstract: Telomere length is recognized as a marker of biological age, and shorter mean leukocyte telomere length is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease. It is unclear whether repeated exposure to ultra-endurance aerobic exercise is beneficial or detrimental in the long-term and whether it attenuates biological aging. We quantified 67 ultra-marathon runners' and 56 apparently healthy males' leukocyte telomere length (T/S ratio) using real-time quantitative PCR. The ultra-marathon runners had 11% longer telomeres (T/S ratio) than controls (ultra-marathon runners: T/S ratio = 3.5±0.68, controls: T/S ratio = 3.1±0.41; β = 0.40, SE = 0.10, P = 1.4×10(-4)) in age-adjusted analysis. The difference remained statistically significant after adjustment for cardiovascular risk factors (P = 2.2×10(-4)). The magnitude of this association translates into 16.2±0.26 years difference in biological age and approximately 324-648bp difference in leukocyte telomere length between ultra-marathon runners and healthy controls. Neither traditional cardiovascular risk factors nor markers of inflammation/adhesion molecules explained the difference in leukocyte telomere length between ultra-marathon runners and controls. Taken together these data suggest that regular engagement in ultra-endurance aerobic exercise attenuates cellular aging.
DOI Link: 10.1371/journal.pone.0069377
eISSN: 1932-6203
Version: Publisher Version
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © 2013 Denham et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, Dept. of Cardiovascular Sciences

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