Human Genetics

, Volume 102, Issue 4, pp 397–402

Telomeric length and telomerase activity vary with age in peripheral blood cells obtained from normal individuals

  • Hiroshi Iwama
  • K. Ohyashiki
  • Junko H. Ohyashiki
  • Shigifumi Hayashi
  • Naoyuki Yahata
  • Keiko Ando
  • Keisuke Toyama
  • Akinori Hoshika
  • Masaru Takasaki
  • Mayumi Mori
  • Jerry W. Shay
Original investigation

DOI: 10.1007/s004390050711

Cite this article as:
Iwama, H., Ohyashiki, K., Ohyashiki, J. et al. Hum Genet (1998) 102: 397. doi:10.1007/s004390050711

Abstract

The telomerase activity and length of telomeres of peripheral blood mononuclear cells obtained from 124 healthy individuals aged 4–95years was measured. Telomerase activity level was semiquantitatively assessed by a fluorescent-telomeric repeat amplification protocol (fluorescent-TRAP) using an internal telomerase assay standard, fluorescent primers and an automated laser fluorescent DNA sequencer. Telomeric length, measured by assay of terminal restriction fragments (TRFs), was determined in HinfI-digested DNA by Southern blot analysis using a (TTAGGG)4 probe. TRF length was determined in 80 individuals and age-related progressive reduction of size was observed. TRF length in peripheral blood mononuclear cells obtained from normal individuals (aged 4–39years) decreased by approximately 84bp per year, while in individuals aged 40years it decreased by 41bp per year. In contrast, telomerase activity showed an apparent biphasic pattern with aging. Individuals aged 4–39years showed a progressive decrease in telomerase activity, whereas 65% of those aged 40years showed relatively stable but very low telomerase activity, and the remaining individuals aged 40years had no detectable telomerase activity. These data obtained from normal individuals might in the future be of value to help risk stratify and manage the care of patients with leukemia.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hiroshi Iwama
    • 1
  • K. Ohyashiki
    • 1
  • Junko H. Ohyashiki
    • 1
  • Shigifumi Hayashi
    • 1
  • Naoyuki Yahata
    • 1
  • Keiko Ando
    • 1
  • Keisuke Toyama
    • 1
  • Akinori Hoshika
    • 2
  • Masaru Takasaki
    • 3
  • Mayumi Mori
    • 4
  • Jerry W. Shay
    • 5
  1. 1.The First Department of Internal Medicine, Tokyo Medical College, 6-7-1 Nishi-shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160, Japan Tel.: +81-3-3342-6111 ext. 5894, Fax: +81-3-5381-6651, e-mail: ohyashik@rr.iij4u.or.jpJP
  2. 2.Department of Pediatrics, Tokyo Medical College, Tokyo 160, JapanJP
  3. 3.Department of Geriatric Medicine, Tokyo Medical College, Tokyo 160, JapanJP
  4. 4.Department of Internal Medicine, Tokyo Metropolitan Geriatric Hospital, JapanJP
  5. 5.Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX 75235-9039, USAUS