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Telomere length and risk of Parkinson's disease

Authors

  • Hao Wang MD, PhD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
    • Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health, 665 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115

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  • Honglei Chen MD, PhD,

    1. Epidemiology Branch, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina
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  • Xiang Gao PhD,

    1. Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
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  • Monica McGrath ScD,

    1. Department of Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
    2. Channing Laboratory, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
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  • Dwayne Deer BS,

    1. Channing Laboratory, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
    2. Program in Molecular and Genetic Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
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  • Immaculata De Vivo PhD, MPH,

    1. Department of Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
    2. Channing Laboratory, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
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  • Michael A. Schwarzschild MD, PhD,

    1. Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts
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  • Alberto Ascherio MD, DrPH

    1. Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
    2. Department of Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
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Abstract

We investigated whether telomere length was associated with the risk of Parkinson's disease (PD) in a case-control study (96 cases and 172 age-matched controls) nested within the Health Professionals Follow-up Study. Relative ratio of telomere repeat copy number to single-gene copy number in peripheral blood leukocytes was determined by quantitative real time PCR. Men with shorter telomeres had a lower PD risk (multivariate adjusted relative risk for the lowest vs. the highest quartile 0.33; 95% confidence interval: 0.12–0.90). Our results suggest that, contrary to telomere attrition observed in several aging-related diseases, shorter telomeres are not associated with an increased risk of PD. © 2007 Movement Disorder Society

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