Leukocyte telomere length dynamics in women and men: menopause vs age effects

Christine Dalgård, Athanase Benetos, Simon Verhulst, Carlos Labat, Jeremy D Kark, Kaare Christensen, Masayuki Kimura, Kirsten Ohm Kyvik, Abraham Aviv

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

BACKGROUND: A longer leukocyte telomere length (LTL) in women than men has been attributed to a slow rate of LTL attrition in women, perhaps due to high estrogen exposure during the premenopausal period.

METHODS: To test this premise we performed a longitudinal study (an average follow-up of 12 years) in a subset of the population-based Danish National Twin Registry. Participants consisted of 405 women, aged 37.5 (range 18.0-64.3) years, and 329 men, aged 38.8 (range 18.0-58.5) years, at baseline examination.

RESULTS: Women showed a longer LTL [kb ± standard error(SE)] than men (baseline: 7.01 ± 0.03 vs 6.87 ± 0.04; follow-up: 6.79 ± 0.03 vs 6.65 ± 0.03; both P = 0.005). Women displayed deceleration of LTL attrition (bp/years ± SE), as they transitioned from the premenopausal period (20.6 ± 1.0) through the perimenopausal period (16.5 ± 1.3) to the postmenopausal period (15.1 ± 1.7). Age was not associated with LTL attrition in women after statistical control for menopausal status. Men, in contrast, displayed a trend for age-dependent increase in the rate of LTL attrition, which differed significantly from the pattern in women (P for interaction = 0.01).

CONCLUSIONS: Results indicate that the premenopausal period is expressed in a higher rate of LTL attrition than the postmenopausal period. They further suggest that the sex gap in LTL stems from earlier ages-the period of growth and development. The higher rate of LTL attrition in premenopausal women, we propose, might relate to estrogen-mediated increased turnover of erythrocytes, menstrual bleeding or both.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Epidemiology
Volume44
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)1688-1695
ISSN0300-5771
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Fingerprint

Telomere
Menopause
Premenopause
Postmenopause
Estrogens
Deceleration
Growth and Development
Longitudinal Studies
Registries

Keywords

  • Telomeres
  • Women
  • Men
  • Monepause

Cite this

Dalgård, Christine ; Benetos, Athanase ; Verhulst, Simon ; Labat, Carlos ; Kark, Jeremy D ; Christensen, Kaare ; Kimura, Masayuki ; Kyvik, Kirsten Ohm ; Aviv, Abraham. / Leukocyte telomere length dynamics in women and men : menopause vs age effects. In: International Journal of Epidemiology. 2015 ; Vol. 44, No. 5. pp. 1688-1695.
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title = "Leukocyte telomere length dynamics in women and men: menopause vs age effects",
abstract = "BACKGROUND: A longer leukocyte telomere length (LTL) in women than men has been attributed to a slow rate of LTL attrition in women, perhaps due to high estrogen exposure during the premenopausal period.METHODS: To test this premise we performed a longitudinal study (an average follow-up of 12 years) in a subset of the population-based Danish National Twin Registry. Participants consisted of 405 women, aged 37.5 (range 18.0-64.3) years, and 329 men, aged 38.8 (range 18.0-58.5) years, at baseline examination.RESULTS: Women showed a longer LTL [kb ± standard error(SE)] than men (baseline: 7.01 ± 0.03 vs 6.87 ± 0.04; follow-up: 6.79 ± 0.03 vs 6.65 ± 0.03; both P = 0.005). Women displayed deceleration of LTL attrition (bp/years ± SE), as they transitioned from the premenopausal period (20.6 ± 1.0) through the perimenopausal period (16.5 ± 1.3) to the postmenopausal period (15.1 ± 1.7). Age was not associated with LTL attrition in women after statistical control for menopausal status. Men, in contrast, displayed a trend for age-dependent increase in the rate of LTL attrition, which differed significantly from the pattern in women (P for interaction = 0.01).CONCLUSIONS: Results indicate that the premenopausal period is expressed in a higher rate of LTL attrition than the postmenopausal period. They further suggest that the sex gap in LTL stems from earlier ages-the period of growth and development. The higher rate of LTL attrition in premenopausal women, we propose, might relate to estrogen-mediated increased turnover of erythrocytes, menstrual bleeding or both.",
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Leukocyte telomere length dynamics in women and men : menopause vs age effects. / Dalgård, Christine; Benetos, Athanase; Verhulst, Simon; Labat, Carlos; Kark, Jeremy D; Christensen, Kaare; Kimura, Masayuki; Kyvik, Kirsten Ohm; Aviv, Abraham.

In: International Journal of Epidemiology, Vol. 44, No. 5, 2015, p. 1688-1695.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Leukocyte telomere length dynamics in women and men

T2 - menopause vs age effects

AU - Dalgård, Christine

AU - Benetos, Athanase

AU - Verhulst, Simon

AU - Labat, Carlos

AU - Kark, Jeremy D

AU - Christensen, Kaare

AU - Kimura, Masayuki

AU - Kyvik, Kirsten Ohm

AU - Aviv, Abraham

N1 - © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the International Epidemiological Association.

PY - 2015

Y1 - 2015

N2 - BACKGROUND: A longer leukocyte telomere length (LTL) in women than men has been attributed to a slow rate of LTL attrition in women, perhaps due to high estrogen exposure during the premenopausal period.METHODS: To test this premise we performed a longitudinal study (an average follow-up of 12 years) in a subset of the population-based Danish National Twin Registry. Participants consisted of 405 women, aged 37.5 (range 18.0-64.3) years, and 329 men, aged 38.8 (range 18.0-58.5) years, at baseline examination.RESULTS: Women showed a longer LTL [kb ± standard error(SE)] than men (baseline: 7.01 ± 0.03 vs 6.87 ± 0.04; follow-up: 6.79 ± 0.03 vs 6.65 ± 0.03; both P = 0.005). Women displayed deceleration of LTL attrition (bp/years ± SE), as they transitioned from the premenopausal period (20.6 ± 1.0) through the perimenopausal period (16.5 ± 1.3) to the postmenopausal period (15.1 ± 1.7). Age was not associated with LTL attrition in women after statistical control for menopausal status. Men, in contrast, displayed a trend for age-dependent increase in the rate of LTL attrition, which differed significantly from the pattern in women (P for interaction = 0.01).CONCLUSIONS: Results indicate that the premenopausal period is expressed in a higher rate of LTL attrition than the postmenopausal period. They further suggest that the sex gap in LTL stems from earlier ages-the period of growth and development. The higher rate of LTL attrition in premenopausal women, we propose, might relate to estrogen-mediated increased turnover of erythrocytes, menstrual bleeding or both.

AB - BACKGROUND: A longer leukocyte telomere length (LTL) in women than men has been attributed to a slow rate of LTL attrition in women, perhaps due to high estrogen exposure during the premenopausal period.METHODS: To test this premise we performed a longitudinal study (an average follow-up of 12 years) in a subset of the population-based Danish National Twin Registry. Participants consisted of 405 women, aged 37.5 (range 18.0-64.3) years, and 329 men, aged 38.8 (range 18.0-58.5) years, at baseline examination.RESULTS: Women showed a longer LTL [kb ± standard error(SE)] than men (baseline: 7.01 ± 0.03 vs 6.87 ± 0.04; follow-up: 6.79 ± 0.03 vs 6.65 ± 0.03; both P = 0.005). Women displayed deceleration of LTL attrition (bp/years ± SE), as they transitioned from the premenopausal period (20.6 ± 1.0) through the perimenopausal period (16.5 ± 1.3) to the postmenopausal period (15.1 ± 1.7). Age was not associated with LTL attrition in women after statistical control for menopausal status. Men, in contrast, displayed a trend for age-dependent increase in the rate of LTL attrition, which differed significantly from the pattern in women (P for interaction = 0.01).CONCLUSIONS: Results indicate that the premenopausal period is expressed in a higher rate of LTL attrition than the postmenopausal period. They further suggest that the sex gap in LTL stems from earlier ages-the period of growth and development. The higher rate of LTL attrition in premenopausal women, we propose, might relate to estrogen-mediated increased turnover of erythrocytes, menstrual bleeding or both.

KW - Telomeres

KW - men

KW - menopause

KW - women

KW - Telomeres

KW - Women

KW - Men

KW - Monepause

U2 - 10.1093/ije/dyv165

DO - 10.1093/ije/dyv165

M3 - Journal article

C2 - 26385867

VL - 44

SP - 1688

EP - 1695

JO - International Journal of Epidemiology

JF - International Journal of Epidemiology

SN - 0300-5771

IS - 5

ER -