Family History of Exceptional Longevity Is Associated with Lower Serum Uric Acid Levels in Ashkenazi Jews

Authors

  • Jennifer Yi-Chun Lai MD, MPH,

    1. Division of Nephrology, Department of Internal Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
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    • Both authors contributed equally.
  • Gil Atzmon PhD,

    1. Departments of Medicine, School of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York
    2. Department of Genetics, School of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York
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    • Both authors contributed equally.
  • Michal L. Melamed MD, MHS,

    1. Departments of Medicine, School of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York
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  • Thomas H. Hostetter MD,

    1. Departments of Medicine, School of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York
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  • Jill P. Crandall MD,

    1. Departments of Medicine, School of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York
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  • Nir Barzilai MD,

    1. Departments of Medicine, School of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York
    2. Department of Genetics, School of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York
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  • Markus Bitzer MD

    1. Division of Nephrology, Department of Internal Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
    2. Departments of Medicine, School of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York
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Address correspondence to Markus Bitzer, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Michigan, 1150 W. Medical Center Dr, 1570C MSRB2, Ann Arbor, MI, 48105. E-mail: markusbi@umich.edu

Abstract

Objectives

To test whether lower serum uric acid (UA) levels are associated with longevity independent of renal function.

Design

Cross-sectional cohort study.

Setting

Ashkenazi Jewish individuals with exceptional longevity (Longevity Genes Project at Albert Einstein College of Medicine).

Participants

Long-lived individuals (LLI) of Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity (mean age ± standard deviation 97.7 ± 2.9, n = 365), their offspring (mean age  ± standard deviation 68.2 ± 8.2, n = 593) and controls (without family history of longevity, mean age ± standard deviation 72.5 ± 9.9, n = 356).

Measurements

Association between UA levels and estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) as well as chronic kidney disease (CKD) stage, and correlation of UA levels of LLI and offspring were determined. Because LLI lack an appropriate control group, UA levels, eGFR, and prevalence of hyperuricemia and CKD stages were compared between offspring and controls.

Results

Offspring were less likely to have hyperuricemia and had lower UA levels than controls. Despite negative correlation between UA levels and eGFR and positive correlation between UA levels and CKD stages, eGFR and the prevalence of CKD stage III to V were not found to be different between offspring and controls. Furthermore, significant association between UA levels in LLI and their offspring (β estimate 0.1544, 95% confidence interval = 0.08–0.23, P < .001) has been observed.

Conclusion

Offspring had lower UA levels than controls despite similar renal function, suggesting that other factors such as UA metabolism or renal tubular transport determine UA levels. The association between UA levels and longevity is particularly intriguing because UA levels are potentially modifiable with diet and drugs.

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