February 16, 2012
Short Telomeres Associated With Earlier Death In Denmark

As your cells divide the telomere cap regions on the ends of chromosomes get shorter. Some studies have found short telomeres to be associated with higher disease risk and lower life expectancy. A Danish study finds more evidence that shorter telomeres are correlated with increased risk of early death.

In an ongoing study of almost 20,000 Danes, a team of researchers from the University of Copenhagen have isolated each individual’s DNA to analyse their specific telomere length – a measurement of cellular aging.

"The risk of heart attack or early death is present whether your telomeres are shortened due to lifestyle or due to high age," says Clinical Professor of Genetic Epidemiology Borge Nordestgaard from the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences at the University of Copenhagen. Professor Nordestgaard is also a chief physician at Copenhagen University Hospital, where he and colleagues conduct large scale studies of groups of tens of thousands of Danes over several decades.

When telomeres get too short cell division (and therefore tissue repair) becomes hampered and even stops. So short telomeres are bad news.

If shorter telomeres really do boost heart attack risk this suggests that cell therapies which introduce cells with longer telomeres will increase life expectancy.

The recent “Copenhagen General Population Study” involved almost 20,000 people, some of which were followed during almost 19 years, and the conclusion was clear: If the telomere length was short, the risk of heart attack and early death was increased by 50 and 25 per cent, respectively.

Getting your telomeres tested would probably provide more disease risk insights than getting your DNA tested. Telomere length provides big insight into heart disease risk.

The study also revealed that one in four Danes has telomeres with such short length that not only will they statistically die before their time, but their risk of heart attack is also increased by almost 50 per cent.

This suggests that continuous replacement of dying cardiovascular system cells is essential to keep your heart and vascular system in good repair.

We need biotech that can take cells from our bodies, identify the healthiest and least damaged cells, restore telomere length, and then transform those cells into the various cell types a human body uses. With sufficient biotech we could restore and maintain our repair systems in a state of very high function. We could add decades to our lives just from youthful cell therapies delivered to many stem cell reservoirs in our bodies.

Share |      Randall Parker, 2012 February 16 11:23 PM  Aging Mechanisms

PacRim Jim said at February 17, 2012 1:39 AM:

Short telomeres associated with earlier death in Denmark?
Thanks for the warning. I'll stay out of Denmark.

Abelard Lindsey said at February 17, 2012 11:34 AM:

You can try TA-65.

bmack500 said at February 18, 2012 2:08 AM:

I'm taking TA-65, about 5 months now, but not full dose. My vision's improved, my sleep is way better and I'm dreaming vividly again (I'm 50). Lots of little aches and pains have just gone away, and my cognitive functioning is improving.

It's quite a product, but very expensive!

Randall Parker said at February 18, 2012 9:41 AM:

Regards TA-65: It is not clear to me that a telomerase activator will lengthen life. The danger: more cancer.

Telomere shortening with age is probably an evolved anti-cancer mechanism. Basically, you are circumventing the mechanism if TA-65 really works.

If we had really excellent cures for cancer then telomere lengthening would become a much more attractive proposition.

drdave said at February 18, 2012 1:51 PM:

Randall! Please stop automatically associating cancer with telomerase activation. The only time that has ever happened is when viral vectors are used to insert the telomerase gene into genomes where it is not present as in certain genetically engineered forms of mice. This particular action increases cancer ANYTIME you use it for ANY gene insertion, not just telomerase. Long telomeres reduce cancer risk (JAMA Dec 2010). Because cancer hijacks telomerase for it s own purposes people mistake telomerase activation as a de facto cancer risk. It is not. Studies with TA-65 and other non commercial telomerase activators have not shown any increase in cancer. People are misconstruing the fact that cancer hijacks telomerase as a risk for cancer when turning it on in non cancer cells. First off cancer turns on telomerase by gene amplification, mutation, recombination and other methods that do not involve TA-65 or other "derepressors". Adding TA-65 to pre malignant cells or cancer xenografts (Perry et al) does not increase the speed or toxicity of the cancer. Basically cancer is cancer and adding telomerase activation does not make it more cancerous. In pre malignant villous adenoma cultures the same things was found- no increase in the rate of cancerous transformation. TA-65 does things no other single supplement can and has been proven in human trials as well as cell cultures and animal studies ( See Blasco, Maria in pub med). Is it expensive? What are your life and your health worth. Has anyone else taken anything that can reduce hair loss gray hair improve the immune system, bone density, sex drive eyesight reduce skin damage blood pressure insulin and glucose levels and do so in a proven clinical human trial not just someone our their claiming it does in "their experience" WE look forward to even more potent telomerase activators in the future. After 3+ years of taking TA-65 I will be in the line for the next one, and the next one etc etc. I wish I could find away to get people to do more research before they volunteer their expert opinions on internet forums. This cancer question/comment appears endlessly in the internet> You can see my Youtube channel for more information on the topic. Dave Woynarowski MD Author The Immortality Edge

Laurie Kelley said at February 18, 2012 4:11 PM:

Telomere scientist Bill Andrews of Sierra Sciences has teamed up with my company to create a telomere support product that is all natural and very affordable! I have been on it since August and my vision is much better, I am much more alert mentally, my sleep is better than ever and my hair is turning dark again. I find I have more energy than I have had since I was in my twenties and I have more drive than ever in my life. Our product is reasonably priced and money back guaranteed. There is a video link on my website: www.lkelley.isagenix.com.

MadMax said at February 18, 2012 4:23 PM:

TA65 works and I have been taking it for months now and not at the highest most expensive dosages and I am 60+ and in poor health before taking it but now slowly but surely improving. The first time I took it for 4 months before running out and you do notice a decline somewhat as the weeks pass off of it and after about 5 months off I got more and once again seeing changes to the positive after about 5 weeks back on it. Nothing needed as far as changing lifestyle to see those changes either. It does not upset your stomach and all changes are fairly subtle over time. I am going to predict we will see the world's oldest man record broken in the next 10 years or so just from a few people in their mid to late 90s taking this and it repairing them and making them younger.

bmack500 said at February 18, 2012 8:34 PM:

Regarding the ISAgenix product, is the following disclaimer, not found on TA65:


• Claim it lengthens telomeres
• Claim it induces telomerase (enzyme that can reverse telomere shortening)

And my general distrust of multi level marketing. I'm not saying it doesn't work, but without evidence of telomerase activation why would I get it?

Dr Dave said at February 19, 2012 9:13 AM:

To Laurie: 1) I had no idea you owned Isagenix- your company! Really! It must be nice to own a several hundred million dollar MLM company. 2) Bill is a wonderful scientist and is receiving a stipend for his support. He also still takes TA-65. I know him personally so I can verify this. he has said, " I will never stop taking TA-65". most of the "overmarketing" of the Isagenix product has not been done by the company. It has been done by the distributors-people like you Laurie- who know almost nothing about telomeres and telomerase except what you have been told by the real higher ups of the company, one of whom was as of last year still taking TA-65.

To bmack500 Isagnix cannot make those claims because they do not have the data, especially the human data, or the animal studies for that matter. You are right to mistrust MLM's but in this case Isagenix is quite clever. The do not personally make unlawful or misleading claims. They leave that to their downline distributors and actually do try to control it because of the legal ramifications. For months before their product was released downlines were flooding the internet with "new telomerase activator stronger than Ta-65" The company actually backed off a lot of their claims. Now the rumor is they are doing testing. We'll have to wait (probably about 2 years)and see but in point of fact it is a poor financial move to do the testing since it is expensive and if it fails they will have to keep it quiet or twist it somehow and all that money will have been spent with no result. Far better to simply ride the coat tales of other products and let those companies like TA Sciences which has invested millions in testing do the work and prove the concept. Because they are sharp business men who are selling biz ops to thousands and raking in millions, I suspect they are aware of that! FYI TAS has invested over 10 million of their own money into their product. This was done before one dime was ever made back. Makes you think they believe in what they are doing! Additionally TA-65 is manufactured to the same strict standards as a prescription phamaceutical by Geron. Most vitamins are not unless they are pharmaceutical grade.
Finally the reason people buy anything that is not proven is because it is cheaper and they hope for the best. There are entire forums that whine about teh price of TA-65 and scurry around looking for cheaper alternatives that have have yet to be found. Sad to short change one's health and longevity but only the individual can make the determination on the value of their own life. Dr Dave

Joe Morris said at February 20, 2012 7:00 AM:

Forgive me. I stumbled across this article and I am woefully ignorant of telomeres are. However, there is one lie that was interesting: "This suggests that continuous replacement of dying cardiovascular system cells is essential to keep your heart and vascular system in good repair." This is normally accomplished by exercise, correct?

Joe Morris said at February 20, 2012 7:02 AM:

I am sorry, I meant one LINE is interesting.

Michael said at February 20, 2012 11:40 PM:

Drdave - I would enjoy your thoughts regarding the sciencedaily article.

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