No strong association among epigenetic modifications by DNA methylation, telomere length, and physical fitness in biological aging

Yasuhiro Seki, Dora Aczel, Ferenc Torma, Matyas Jokai, Anita Boros, Katsuhiko Suzuki, Mitsuru Higuchi, Kumpei Tanisawa, Istvan Boldogh, Steve Horvath, Zsolt Radak*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Cellular senescence is greatly accelerated by telomere shortening, and the steps forward in human aging are strongly influenced by environmental and lifestyle factors, whether DNA methylation (DNAm) is affected by exercise training, remains unclear. In the present study, we investigated the relationships between physiological functions, maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max), vertical jump, working memory, telomere length (TL) assessed by RT-PCR, DNA methylation-based estimation of TL (DNAmTL), and DNA methylation-based biomarkers of aging of master rowers (N = 146) and sedentary subjects (N = 95), aged between 37 and 85 years. It was found that the TL inversely correlated with chronological age. We could not detect an association between telomere length and VO2max, vertical jump, and working memory by RT-PCR method, while these physiological test results showed a correlation with DNAmTL. DNAmGrimAge and DNAmPhenoAge acceleration were inversely associated with telomere length assessed by both methods. It appears that there are no strong beneficial effects of exercise or physiological fitness on telomere shortening, however, the degree of DNA methylation is associated with telomere length.

Original languageEnglish
JournalBiogerontology
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2023

Keywords

  • DNA methylation
  • Epigenetical aging
  • Exercise
  • Physical fitness
  • Telomere

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ageing
  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

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