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Internal Medicine
Vol. 50 (2011) No. 23 P 2871-2875




Background Aortic dissection is an age-related and lethal vascular disease. Aging, which is associated with degeneration, is the major risk factor of aortic dissection. Telomeres are specialized DNA structures located at the end of eukaryotic chromosomes, the telomere length could be considered as an index of vascular aging. The purpose of present study was undertaken to investigate the relationship between the leukocyte telomere length and aortic dissection.
Methods and Results Seventy-two patients with aortic dissection and seventy-two sex- and age-matched subjects without vascular diseases were collected. Leukocyte telomere length ratio (T/S ratio) was measured using a quantitative PCR method and analyzed. A significantly shorter leukocyte telomere length in the patients with aortic dissection was found compared to the controls, [median 1.02 (interquartile range {IQR}:0.83-1.37) vs median 1.63 [IQR: 1.18-2.51), p<0.001]. The telomere length in the control group showed a trend of inverse correlation with age (r=-0.226, p=0.056), however, there was no significant correlation in aortic dissection (r=0.062, p=0.607). The short leukocyte telomere length was associated with aortic dissection, even after adjustment for other risk factor (OR=0.214, 95% CI: 0.085-0.537).
Conclusion Leukocyte telomere length could be an independent predictor of aortic dissection. Measurement of the leukocyte telomere length may be valuable for patients with a high risk of aortic dissection.

Copyright © 2011 by The Japanese Society of Internal Medicine

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