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J Am Geriatr Soc. 2004 Feb;52(2):274-7.

Clinical phenotype of families with longevity.

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Institute for Aging Research, Diabetes Research and Training Center, Department of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York 10461, USA.



To determine whether offspring of centenarians acquired protection from age-related diseases.


Case-control study.


The study was part of the Longevity Genes Project at Albert Einstein College of Medicine.


Centenarians (n=145), offspring of centenarians (n=180), and spouses of the offspring of centenarians (n=75) as a control group. Two additional groups served as controls: age-matched Ashkenazi Jews, and an age-matched control group from the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.


Self-reported family history of longevity; prevalence of hypertension, diabetes mellitus, heart attacks, and strokes; and objective measurements of body mass index and fat mass.


Parents of centenarians (born in approximately 1870) had a markedly greater ( approximately sevenfold) "risk" for longevity (reaching ages 90-99), supporting the notion that genetics contributed to longevity in these families. The offspring of long-lived parents had significantly lower prevalence of hypertension (by 23%), diabetes mellitus (by 50%), heart attacks (by 60%), and strokes (no events reported) than several age-matched control groups.


Offspring of centenarians may inherit significantly better health. The authors suggest that a cohort of these subjects and their spouses is ideal to study the phenotype and genotype of longevity and its interaction with the environment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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