Biogerontology

, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 279–284

Telomere length dynamics differ in foetal and early post-natal human leukocytes in a longitudinal study

  • Denise K. Holmes
  • Ilaria Bellantuono
  • Steve A. Walkinshaw
  • Zarko Alfirevic
  • Tracey A. Johnston
  • Nimish V. Subhedar
  • Rachel Chittick
  • Richard Swindell
  • Robert F. Wynn
Research Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10522-008-9194-y

Cite this article as:
Holmes, D.K., Bellantuono, I., Walkinshaw, S.A. et al. Biogerontology (2009) 10: 279. doi:10.1007/s10522-008-9194-y

Abstract

Haemopoietic stem cells (HSC) undergo a process of self renewal to constantly maintain blood cell turnover. However, it has become apparent that adult HSC lose their self-renewal ability with age. Telomere shortening in peripheral blood leukocytes has been seen to occur with age and it has been associated with loss of HSC proliferative capacity and cellular ageing. In contrast foetal HSC are known to have greater proliferative capacity than post-natal stem cells. However it is unknown whether they undergo a similar process of telomere shortening. In this study we show a more accentuated rate of telomere loss in leukocytes from pre term infants compared to human foetuses of comparable age followed longitudinally for 8–12 weeks in a longitudinal study. Our results point to a difference in HSC behaviour between foetal and early postnatal life which is independent of age but may be influenced by events at birth itself.

Keywords

ProgenitorsStem cellsHematopoiesisTelomere lengthFoetalAging

Supplementary material

10522_2008_9194_MOESM1_ESM.ppt (30 kb)
Analysis of mTRF changes of the same sample run in 3 series of 4–5 adjacent lanes on two different gels to determine the mTRF variability associated with the technique (PPT 31 kb)
10522_2008_9194_MOESM2_ESM.ppt (278 kb)
Representative examples of telomere gels for (A) an alloimmunised foetus. mTRF (kb) for each sample is indicated at the top of each lane. (B) a gel where the same sample was run to assess the variability of the technique (PPT 278 kb)

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Denise K. Holmes
    • 1
  • Ilaria Bellantuono
    • 1
    • 2
  • Steve A. Walkinshaw
    • 3
  • Zarko Alfirevic
    • 3
  • Tracey A. Johnston
    • 4
  • Nimish V. Subhedar
    • 5
  • Rachel Chittick
    • 5
  • Richard Swindell
    • 6
  • Robert F. Wynn
    • 1
  1. 1.Stem Cell Research GroupRoyal Manchester Children’s HospitalManchesterUK
  2. 2.Academic Unit of Bone Biology, The Medical SchoolUniversity of SheffieldSheffieldUK
  3. 3.Fetal CentreLiverpool Women’s HospitalLiverpoolUK
  4. 4.Fetal Management UnitSt Mary’s Hospital for Women and ChildrenManchesterUK
  5. 5.Neonatology DepartmentLiverpool Women’s HospitalLiverpoolUK
  6. 6.Department of Medical StatisticsChristie HospitalManchesterUK