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FRIMED2-FRIPRO forskerprosjekt, medisin og helse

Telomere length, epigenetic age and T cells in women who give birth at an older age

Alternativ tittel: Telomerlengde, epigenetisk alder og T-celler hos kvinner som føder sitt første barn senere i livet.

Tildelt: kr 9,8 mill.

Dette prosjektet skal undersøke kvinners fruktbarhet i sammenheng med tre viktige mål for biologisk alder: telomerlengde, epigenetisk alder og immunstatus. Vi vil teste hypotesen om at kvinner med lengre telomerer, yngre epigenetiske alder og sunnere immunstatus enn sine jevnaldrende har økt evne til å føde sitt første barn senere i livet. DNA-prøver fra 2000 mor-far-barn trioer fra den norske mor og barn-undersøkelsen (MoBa) ble valgt ut for dette prosjektet. Rutgers University (New Jersey, USA) skal måle telomerlengde i disse 2000 trioene, og University of California Los Angeles (California, USA) skal måle DNA-metylering hos 1000 av mødrene som er minst 32 år gamle. Grunnen til at vi ønsker å se på DNA-metylering er at den kan brukes til å estimere epigenetisk alder og immunstatus. Dette arbeidet er viktig for å kunne kartlegge hvorfor noen kvinner skiller seg fra andre kvinner i sin evne til å få barn senere i livet.

This project will use the mother-father-newborn (MFN) trio design to investigate the relationship between female fecundity and maternal LTL, epigenetic age, and immune status. Our central hypothesis hinges on a synthesis of three major findings. First, women with delayed menopause and those who conceive later in life show less CVD and live longer. Second, women with constitutively long LTL have delayed menopause, show less CVD, and live longer. Third, children born to older women typically have older fathers and older fathers have longer sperm TL. We propose that, because LTL is highly heritable and offspring's LTL is positively correlated with paternal age at the time of conception, LTL of offspring conceived by older women might be constitutively longer due to these joint effects. This central hypothesis and its corollary will be tested in 2,000 MFN trios from the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study (MoBa), based on LTL data that will be generated through a complementary grant from the US National Institutes of Health (NIH). In the current proposal, we will extend the above LTL analyses by investigating two additional leading indices of biological age: epigenetic age and immune status. Epigenetic age will be constructed using data from DNA-methylation of CpG sites, and immune status will be assessed by the proportion of naive to memory CD8+ T cells in 1000 mothers who gave birth to their first child at the age of 35 years or above. We hypothesize that women who give birth at an older age will display not only a longer LTL, but also a younger epigenetic age and younger immune status. By using the MFN trio model, our approach to examining the link between women's reproductive ability and LTL, epigenetic age and immune status enables a more profound investigation of women's fecundity. This knowledge is critical for public health, given that LTL is associated with a host of aging-related disorders and with longevity in contemporary humans.

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FRIMED2-FRIPRO forskerprosjekt, medisin og helse

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