Short Telomere Length is Associated with Aging, Central Obesity, Poor Sleep and Hypertension in Lebanese Individuals.

Author: Zgheib NK1, Sleiman F1, Nasreddine L2, Nasrallah M3, Nakhoul N3, Isma'eel H3, Tamim H3,4
11Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine, American University of Beirut, Lebanon.
22Department of Nutrition & Food Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences, American University of Beirut, Lebanon.
33Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, American University of Beirut Medical Center, Lebanon.
44Clinical Research Institute, Faculty of Medicine, American University of Beirut Medical Center, Lebanon.
Conference/Journal: Aging Dis.
Date published: 2018 Feb 1
Other: Volume ID: 9 , Issue ID: 1 , Pages: 77-89 , Special Notes: doi: 10.14336/AD.2017.0310. eCollection 2018 Feb. , Word Count: 294

In Lebanon, data stemming from national cross-sectional surveys indicated significant increasing trends in the prevalence of cardiovascular diseases and associated behavioral and age-related risk factors. To our knowledge, no data are available on relative telomere length (RTL) as a potential biomarker for age-related diseases in a Lebanese population. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether there is an association between RTL and demographic characteristics, lifestyle habits and diseases in the Lebanese. This was a cross-sectional study of 497 Lebanese subjects. Peripheral blood RTL was measured by amplifying telomere and single copy gene using real-time PCR. Mean ± SD RTL was 1.42 ± 0.83, and it was categorized into 3 tertiles. Older age (P=0.002) and wider waist circumference (WC) (P=0.001) were statistically significantly associated with shorter RTL. Multinomial logistic regression showed that subjects who had some level of sleeping difficulty had a statistically significantly shorter RTL when compared to those with no sleeping difficulties at all [OR (95% CI): 2.01 (1.11-3.62) in the first RTL tertile]. Importantly, statistically significantly shorter RTL was found with every additional 10 cm of WC [OR (95% CI): 1.30 (1.11-1.52) for first RTL tertile]. In addition, and after performing the multivariate logistic regression and adjusting for "predictors" of RTL, the odds of having hypertension or being treated for hypertension were higher in patients who had shorter RTL: OR (95% CI): 2.45 (1.36-4.44) and 2.28 (1.22-4.26) in the first RTL tertiles respectively with a similar trend, though not statistically significant, in the second RTL tertiles. This is the first study in Lebanon to show an association between age, central obesity, poor sleep and hypertension and RTL. It is hoped that telomere length measurement be potentially used as a biomarker for biological age and age-related diseases and progression in the Lebanese.

KEYWORDS: Aging; Hypertension; Obesity; Relative telomere length; Sleep

PMID: 29392083 PMCID: PMC5772860 DOI: 10.14336/AD.2017.0310