The journal of nutrition, health & aging

, Volume 18, Issue 2, pp 137–142 | Cite as

Construction of an integral formula of biological age for a healthy Chinese population using principle component analysis

  • W. -G. Zhang
  • X. -J. Bai
  • X. -F. Sun
  • G. -Y. Cai
  • X. -Y. Bai
  • S. -Y. Zhu
  • M. Zhang
  • Xiang-Mei ChenEmail author



Whereas chronological age (CA) cannot distinguish functional differences among individuals of the same age, the biological age (BA) may be used to reflect the functional state of the body. The purpose of this study was to construct an integral formula of the BA, by using principle component analysis (PCA).


The vital organ function of 505 healthy individuals of Han origin (age 35–91 years) was examined. A total of 114 indicators of cardiovascular, pulmonary, and brain functions, and clinical, inflammatory, genetic, psychological, and life habit factors were assessed as candidate indicators of aging. Candidate indicators were submitted with CA to correlation and redundancy analyses. The PCA method was used to build an integral formula of the BA for the population.


Seven biomarkers were selected in accordance with a certain load standard. These biomarkers included the trail making test (TMT), pulse pressure (PP), mitral valve annulus ventricular septum of the peak velocity of early filling (MVES), minimum carotid artery intimalmedial thickness (IMTmin), maximum internal diameter of the carotid artery (Dmax), maximal midexpiratory flow rate 75/25 (MMEF75/25), and Cystatin C (CysC). The formula for the BA was: BA = 0.0685 (TMT) + 0.267 (PP)–1.375 (MVES) + 22.443 (IMTmin) + 2.962 (Dmax)–2.332 (MMEF75/25) + 16.104 (CysC) + 0.137 (CA) + 0.492.


Several genetic and lifestyle indicators were considered as candidate markers of aging. However, ultimately, only markers reflecting the function of the vital organs were included in the BA formula. This study represents a useful attempt to employ multiple indicators to build a comprehensive BA evaluation formula of aging populations.

Key words

Biological age chronological age principal component analysis China healthy people 


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Copyright information

© Serdi and Springer-Verlag France 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. -G. Zhang
    • 1
  • X. -J. Bai
    • 2
  • X. -F. Sun
    • 1
    • 4
  • G. -Y. Cai
    • 1
  • X. -Y. Bai
    • 1
  • S. -Y. Zhu
    • 3
  • M. Zhang
    • 1
  • Xiang-Mei Chen
    • 1
    • 4
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Nephrology, Kidney Institute of Chinese PLA, Chinese PLA General HospitalState Key Laboratory of Kidney DiseasesBeijingPR China
  2. 2.Departments of Gerontology and GeriatricsThe First affiliated Hospital of China Medical UniversityShenyangPR China
  3. 3.Department of NephrologyThe Second Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang Medical UniversityNanchangPR China
  4. 4.Department of Nephrology, Kidney Institute of Chinese PLA, Chinese PLA General HospitalState Key Laboratory of Kidney DiseasesBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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