Navigation Links
Shorter Telomere Length Again Linked to Cancer
Date:7/6/2010

By Amanda Gardner
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, July 6 (HealthDay News) -- People who have white blood cells with shorter telomeres may be at a higher risk of developing cancer, especially aggressive cancers that are more likely to kill, new research suggests.

Telomeres are the "shoelace ends" that cap and protect your chromosomes and naturally get shorter as you age.

Right now, the findings aren't likely to have any clinical usefulness, said Dr. Stefan Kiechl, senior author of a paper appearing in the July 7 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. But in the future, he added, "telomere length may well become a component of risk scores for cancer manifestation and, eventually, cancer prognosis."

The main significance of the new research is in understanding the biology of cancer, according to Dr. Eliot Rosen, an oncology professor at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center in Washington, D.C.

"If the study is confirmed, it's a very, very important finding, but there isn't enough information [here] to be certain of this," he said. "It's very interesting and potentially important, but I wouldn't make too much of it till it's confirmed."

Previous studies have linked cancer and short telomeres via an enzyme called telomerase, which builds telomeres, Rosen explained.

In the natural life cycle, cells stop dividing when telomeres become too short. Cancer cells are able to override this by expressing more of the enzyme telomerase.

"Normal adult cells in the body do not express a telomerase, so for a cell to become immortal and continue to divide, the cell has to express telomerase," Rosen explained.

"What's believed to be the major function of a telomere is to maintain the stability of chromosomes, to prevent the chromosomes from degrading or rearranging or becoming altered in one way or another," he continued. "A reduced telomere length would be predicted to lead to an increased risk of cancer."

This is the first prospective study, meaning one that follows individuals over time, to look at this question.

The authors, from England, Austria and Italy, measured telomere length in leukocytes (white blood cells) in 787 individuals who did not have cancer, before following the individuals for 10 years, until 2005, in what is known as the Bruneck Study out of South Tyrol, Italy.

Individuals who had shorter telomere length at the start of the study were more likely to develop cancer, even after adjusting for more conventional cancer risk factors, including age.

Those with the shortest telomere length had more than triple the risk of developing cancer, and those in the middle group had twice the risk compared to those with the longest telomere length.

Those in the short telomere group also had a higher risk of dying from their malignancy than those with longer telomeres.

This may be because shorter telomere length was also associated with more aggressive cancers, such as stomach, lung and ovarian.

Still, there may be a way to keep your telomeres longer.

"Telomere shortening is accelerated by inflammation and oxidative stress as induced by unhealthy lifestyles like smoking," said Kiechl, a neurology professor at Innsbruck Medical University in Austria. "There are extensive research efforts at the moment to identify conditions (like lifestyle features) that promote or counteract telomere shortening, and this knowledge should be important for future primary prevention of cancer."

More information

The University of Utah has more on telomeres.

SOURCES: Stefan Kiechl, M.D., professor of neurology, Innsbruck Medical University, Austria; Eliot Rosen, M.D., Ph.D., professor of oncology, Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, Washington, D.C.; July 7, 2010 Journal of the American Medical Association


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Shorter Hospital Stays May Hinder Heart Failure Patients
2. CT and MRI scans associated with shorter hospital stays and decreased costs
3. For Some Breast Cancer Patients, Shorter Radiation Works Well
4. Heart attack victims who have ECGs in the field experience shorter time-to-treatment
5. Antibody therapy lengthens survival of metastatic melanoma patients in large clinical trial
6. Texas Childrens Cancer Center first in Texas to magnetically lengthen 9-year-olds leg as she grows
7. Cosmetic Peptides that Significantly Reduce Length and Depth of Wrinkles: Janet Sartin Introduces Advanced Anti-Wrinkle Peptide Serum for All Skin Types
8. Unequal leg length tied to osteoarthritis, says Queens professor
9. Coverage of inexpensive drugs may increase length and quality of life after heart attack
10. The Quantum Scale Helps in the Fight Against Childhood Obesity
11. Exercise May Guard Girls Against Dementia in Senior Years
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Shorter Telomere Length Again Linked to Cancer
(Date:2/27/2017)... CA (PRWEB) , ... February 27, 2017 , ... ... serving San Francisco and environs, is proud to announce an upgrade to the ... on the upgraded Yelp page on topics as diverse as Platelet Rich Plasma ...
(Date:2/26/2017)... ... February 26, 2017 , ... NuevaCare, a leading home care agency based ... and Palo Alto, is proud to announce an important upgrade to its geographic information ... home care close to home, and by having city-specific pages, NuevaCare is answering that ...
(Date:2/26/2017)... ... February 26, 2017 , ... Functional imaging data supports improved ... study released today at the 1st Pan American Parkinson’s and Movement Disorders Congress. ... effective in improving cognitive function in PD patients. This study, led by Ibarretxe-Bilbao ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Only two months after the official release of The Private ... (France), XO Private has initiated a second print-run of its lavish luxury travel coffee ... across when open, weighs in at more than six kilos, retails at EUR 1,000 ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... ... ... In the Health Care IT campaign, Robert Herjavec discusses health IT security ... will be attacked, but when.” However, he and many others involved highlight a promising ... in auditing and monitoring have taken security in health care a very long way. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/24/2017)... Report analyzes the worldwide markets for Endodontic Supplies in US$ ... Canada , Japan , ... Latin America , and Rest of World. ... through 2022. Also, a six-year historic analysis is provided for ... and secondary research. Company profiles are primarily based on public ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... Australie, le 24 février 2017 ITL Limited, ( ASX : ... innovante, est ravie d,annoncer les excellents résultats semestriels clos ... précédente correspondante. Une présentation complète « Résultats et mise à ... ici . Faits marquants ... (Déc. 2015 : 1,04 million $ ; en hausse de 104 %) ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... -- This report analyzes the worldwide markets for Chiral Technology ... Products: Intermediates, Analytical, and Others. The End Use markets ... The report provides separate comprehensive analytics for the US, ... , and Rest of World. Annual estimates and forecasts ... a six-year historic analysis is provided for these markets. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: