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Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2014 Feb;80(2):253-60. doi: 10.1111/cen.12276. Epub 2013 Jul 19.

Increasing paternal age at childbirth is associated with taller stature and less favourable lipid profiles in their children.

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1
Liggins Institute, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand; Gravida: National Centre for Growth and Development, Auckland, New Zealand.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Paternal age at childbirth has been increasing worldwide, and we assessed whether this increase affects growth, body composition and metabolism in their children.

METHODS:

We studied 277 children (aged 3-12 years) born to fathers aged 19·8-51·8 years. Clinical assessments were height and weight adjusted for parental measurements, DEXA-derived body composition, fasting lipids, glucose homoeostasis and hormonal profiles.

RESULTS:

Children born to fathers aged 31-35 (P = 0·009) and >35 years (P = 0·021) were 2 cm taller than those of fathers aged ≤30 years. Children of fathers aged >35 years at childbirth had a lower body mass index (BMI) (-0·32 SDS) than offspring of fathers aged 31-35 (-0·01 SDS; P = 0·043) and ≤30 (0·22 SDS; P = 0·019). There were marked effects of paternal age at childbirth on childhood blood lipids. LDL-C concentrations in children born to fathers aged >35 years were 11% and 21% higher than in children of fathers aged 31-35 and ≤30 years, respectively (P < 0·01). Total cholesterol to HDL-C ratio was also higher among the children of fathers aged 31-35 (12%; P = 0·014) and >35 (16%; P = 0·004) years at childbirth compared with the ≤30 group. In addition, HOMA-IR in girls (but not boys) born of fathers aged 31-35 (0·99) and >35 years (1·11) indicated better insulin sensitivity compared with offspring in the ≤30 group (1·63; P < 0·05).

CONCLUSIONS:

Increasing paternal age at childbirth is associated with a more favourable phenotype in their children (taller and slimmer, with better insulin sensitivity in girls) but with a less favourable lipid profile.

PMID:
23800165
DOI:
10.1111/cen.12276
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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