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Int J Sports Physiol Perform. 2017 Aug;12(7):994-996. doi: 10.1123/ijspp.2016-0471. Epub 2016 Dec 5.

Telomere Length in Elite Athletes.

Abstract

Growing evidence suggests that regular moderate-intensity physical activity is associated with an attenuation of leukocyte telomere length (LTL) shortening. However, more controversy exists regarding higher exercise loads such as those imposed by elite-sport participation.

METHODS:

The authors investigated LTL differences between young elite athletes (n = 61, 54% men, age [mean ± SD] 27.2 ± 4.9 y) and healthy nonsmoker, physically inactive controls (n = 64, 52% men, 28.9 ± 6.3 y) using analysis of variance (ANOVA).

RESULTS:

Elite athletes had, on average, higher LTL than control subjects, 0.89 ± 0.26 vs 0.78 ± 0.31, P = .013 for the group effect, with no significant sex (P = .995) or age effect (P = .114).

CONCLUSIONS:

The results suggest that young elite athletes have longer telomeres than their inactive peers. Further research might assess the LTL of elite athletes of varying ages compared with both age-matched active and inactive individuals.

KEYWORDS:

DNA; biological aging; high-level athletes; leukocytes; telomerase

PMID:
27918657
DOI:
10.1123/ijspp.2016-0471
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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