According to medical professionals, Leucocyte Telomere Length (LTL) is at its longest at birth, shortens quickly until adolescence, and then shortens at a slower rate until old age.
“In this cross-sectional study from July 2015 to December 2020, 1,361 women were randomly selected from north India (aged 20 60 years) who were residing there for more than six months. Among them, 797 pre-diabetic women (obese, 492; non-obese, 305) were enlisted and their demographic, clinical profiles and fasting blood glucose were evaluated”, according to a statement issued on Thursday by a hospital here that conducted the study with other partners.
The research was conceived and designed by Dr Anoop Misra, Executive Chairman and Director, Diabetes and Endocrinology, Fortis C-DOC Hospital for Diabetes and Allied Sciences, and conducted jointly by Surya Prakash Bhatt, Ravindra Mohan Pandey and Ashish Datt Upadhyay. The research has been recently published in the journal BMJ Open Diabetes Research and Care.
“It is already known that LTL is linked with aging and associated diseases, such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. This is the first study to investigate the relationship of LTL in prediabetic women, and specifically, the relationship of LTL with obesity is being reported in women for the first time”, the researchers claimed in the statement.
One who has prediabetes has blood sugar levels that are higher than usual. The level is not yet high enough to be classified as type 2 diabetes.
LTL is the metric that is most frequently used to examine illness risk and age-dependent shortening in human populations.
The researchers claimed the study looked at the connection between prediabetes, truncal obesity, and LTL, the shortening of which predicts accelerated ageing and early death.
LTL was quantified by Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), which is a laboratory technique for rapidly amplifying millions of copies of a specific segment of DNA. In addition, telomere length was calculated from DNA samples and expressed as the mean T/S ratio (telomere repeats per single-copy gene), they stated.
The study participants were chosen at random from 41 residential areas in Delhi to roughly reflect upper, middle, and lower income levels.
Many of them were excluded for a variety of reasons, according to the study, including significant liver, kidney, thyroid, or other endocrine diseases, the use of oral antidiabetic drugs, alcohol, tobacco, or drug abuse, any medication that could affect insulin sensitivity, pregnant women, severe end-organ damage or chronic diseases, malignancy and other endocrine disorders, and severe liver, kidney, thyroid, or other diseases.
The study found that the average LTL was significantly shorter in obese women with pre-diabetes.
Apart from age, obesity and fat distribution in the truncal part of the body are major contributors to telomere shortening in women with abnormal fasting glycemia, the statement read.
“Besides age, obesity and subcutaneous adiposity (predominantly truncal) are major contributors to telomere shortening in Asian Indian women with abnormal fasting glycemia (impaired fasting glucose). This means Indian women who are excess fat, over trunk and are prediabetes, may have lower longevity. It has connotation to mortality statistics of females in India as well huge implications of prevention of prediabetes”, said Dr Mishra.
Lead author Dr Surya Prakash emphasized that obesity in Indian women starts to increase in the 30-40 age group, and that is where most of the lifestyle efforts should be concentrated.
(With inputs from PTI)
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