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Sci Rep. 2013;3:1542. doi: 10.1038/srep01542.

Drug addiction is associated with leukocyte telomere length.

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1
Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Fudan University, Shanghai, PR China.

Abstract

Telomeres are protective chromosomal structures that play a key role in preserving genomic stability. Telomere length is known to be associated with ageing and age-related diseases. To study the impairment of telomeres induced by drug abuse, we conducted an association study in the Chinese Han population. Multivariate linear regression analyses were performed to evaluate the correlation of leukocyte telomere length (LTL) with addiction control status adjusted for age and gender. The results showed that drug abusers exhibited significantly shorter LTLs than controls (P = 1.32e-06). The time before relapse also presented an inverse correlation with LTL (P = 0.02). Drug abusers who had used heroin and diazepam displayed a shorter LTL than those taking other drugs (P = 0.018 and P = 0.009, respectively). Drug abusers who had ingested drugs via snuff exhibited longer LTLs than those using other methods (P = 0.02). These observations may offer a partial explanation for the effects of drug addiction on health.

PMID:
23528991
PMCID:
PMC3607895
DOI:
10.1038/srep01542
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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