• Open Access

Common genetic variants of the β2-adrenergic receptor affect its translational efficiency and are associated with human longevity



Xiao-Li Tian, Department of Human Population Genetics, Institute of Molecular Medicine, Peking University, 5 Yiheyuan Road, Beijing 100871, China. Tel.: +86 10 6275 5397; fax: +86 10 6275 6926; e-mail: tianxiaoli@pku.edu.cn


β-adrenoceptors are the common pharmacological targets for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases and asthma. Genetic modifications of β-adrenergic system in engineered mice affect their lifespan. Here, we tested whether genes encoding for key components of the β-adrenergic signaling pathway are associated with human longevity. We performed a 10-year follow-up study of the Chinese longitudinal healthy longevity survey. The Han Chinese population in this study consisted of 963 long-lived and 1028 geography-matched young individuals. Sixteen SNPs from ADRB1, ADRB2, ADCY5, ADCY6, and MAPK1 were selected and genotyped. Two SNPs, rs1042718 (C/A) and rs1042719 (G/C), of ADRB2 in linkage disequilibrium (D' = 1.0; r2 = 0.67) were found to be associated with enhanced longevity in men in two geographically isolated populations. Bonferroni-corrected P-values in a combined analysis were 0.00053–0.010. Men with haplotype A-C showed an increased probability to become centenarians (the frequency of A-C in long-lived and young individuals are 0.332 and 0.250, respectively, OR = 1.49, CI 95% = 1.17–1.88, = 0.0007), in contrast to those with haplotype C-G (the frequency of C-G in long-lived and young individuals are 0.523 and 0.635, respectively, OR = 0.63, CI 95% = 0.51–0.78, = 0.000018). The permuted P-values were 0.00005 and 0.0009, respectively. ADRB2 encodes the β2-adrenergic receptor; the haplotype A-C markedly reduced its translational efficiency compared with C-G (= 0.002) in transfected HEK293 cells. Thus, our data indicate that enhanced production of β2-adrenergic receptors caused by genetic variants is inversely associated with human lifespan.