COVID: Age Acceleration / Telomers Shortened

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  • Wed, May 12, 2021 - 03:32pm

    Bill in La Mesa

    Bill in La Mesa

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    COVID: Age Acceleration / Telomers Shortened

News Flash: Does COVID whack life expectancy?  Accelerate ageing?


Conclusion: In light of these observations, we hypothesize that some epigenetic alterations are associated with the post-COVID19 condition, particularly in the younger (<60 years)


I’ve actually noticed some folks I see regularly while out & about appear to have aged 10 years over the last year.  No way of knowing if they’ve had COVID, but my jaw has dropped more than once at the appearance of regulars down at the pub & shops I frequent.  “What the heck happened to him!”

Didn’t Star Trek have an episode where they all started aging rapidly?  What was the antidote again Bones?  ADRENALINE!  Got to get me some of that!

  • Wed, May 12, 2021 - 10:10pm



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    lots of things shorten telomeres

Well it turns out that a lot of things shorten those telomeres.  Broadly speaking it looks like inflammation is doing the heavy lifting.

This isn’t a complete list.  I just looked up “telomere length” on a bunch of different unhealthy conditions and this is what I found.

Chronic Stress

The two biggest factors are chronological aging and genetics, but stress is now on the map as one of the most consistent predictors of shorter telomere length. The type of stress determines how big its effect is.


… several reports have also shown that longer telomeres are associated with higher physical activity levels, indicating a potential mechanistic link between physical activity, reduced age-related disease risk, and longevity.

Adult Obesity

Obese adults had shorter TRF lengths than adults who were not obese (mean TRF length difference, -884.5; 95% confidence intervals -1727 to -41.8; t=2.183; df=17; p<0.041).

Chronic Inflammation [mouse model]

These data indicate that systemic chronic inflammation can accelerate ageing via ROS-mediated exacerbation of telomere dysfunction and cell senescence in the absence of any other genetic or environmental factor.

B6 deficiency:

Subclinical inflammation, telomere shortening, homocysteine, vitamin B6, and mortality: the Ludwigshafen Risk and Cardiovascular Health Study

HCY and vitamin B6 correlated with age-corrected RTL (r = – 0.086, p < 0.001; r = 0.04, p = 0.031, respectively), IL-6 (r = 0.148, p < 0.001; r = – 0.249, p < 0.001, respectively), and hs-CRP (r = 0.101, p < 0.001; r = – 0.320, p < 0.001, respectively).  Subjects with the longest telomeres had a significantly higher concentration of vitamin B6, but lower concentrations of HCY, IL-6, and hs-CRP.

[massive difference in all cause mortality between groups 1 & 4: don’t be deficient in B6.]


Telomere length was shorter among ever smokers compared to never smokers (summary standard mean difference [SMD]: -0.11 (95% CI -0.16 to -0.07)). Similarly, shorter telomere length was found among smokers compared to non-smokers, and among current smokers compared to never or former smokers.

Conclusion: Shorter telomeres among ever smokers compared to those who never smoked may imply mechanisms linking tobacco smoke exposure to ageing-related disease.

Eating processed meats!

Researchers are reporting new evidence that consumption of processed meat— such as sausage, hot dogs, lunch meat, and canned meat— may shorten telomeres and raise a person’s risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, and other conditions…. By contrast, the same study found that consumption of unprocessed red meat—such as hamburger, steak, pork, and lamb—was not associated with telomere shortening.

  • Thu, May 13, 2021 - 03:16am



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    COVID: Age Acceleration / Telomers Shortened

My guess it is the lockdowns.  I know the people in my world who are working from home have gained weight, moving less eating and drinking more, less makeup, not getting hair and nails done.

  • Thu, May 13, 2021 - 10:45am



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    Reply To: COVID: Age Acceleration / Telomers Shortened

I would like to see a biological age study done on the vaxxers.

As for the study,  one could assume it’s more associative if they did not account the health status of the infected group.  Including, obesity,coronary disease, diabetes, inflammatory disease etc.     However, per dave’s post.  The evidence is pretty clear that many conditions cause shortened telomeres.     So, there is likely a compound effect in that group and I am sure a severe covid infection that causes these conditions would have a multiplying effect.   Bottom line if your outlook on the actuary tables is not promising, and you are at risk of severe covid, the prognosis of living a long life is rather non-existent even if you survive covid.

  • Thu, May 13, 2021 - 12:19pm



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    COVID probably affects age

I do think COVID might affect aging.  HIV sure does.  Example:

By measuring a molecular signature of aging, researchers have found that HIV infection accelerates aging, adding an average of five years to someone’s biological age. The more rapid aging is occurring in people receiving antiretroviral treatment, so that even though treatment enables them to live for many decades, they remain at higher risk of aging-related chronic disease.

HIV is an inflammatory condition.  Perhaps that’s addressable with…say…niacin?  Maybe the same thing is true for COVID too?  Its probably worth addressing at some point.

  • Thu, May 13, 2021 - 09:05pm



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    COVID: Age Acceleration / Telomers Shortened

Meditation can extend telomere length!, an old link (works on DuckDuckGo); it got me  back to meditation.

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