2003 Volume 49 Issue 4 Pages 287-288
Recent evidence indicates that longevity may be achieved when efficient defence mechanisms against oxidative stress, infections, neoplasia, and cardiovascular events are preserved. Centenarians represent an example of “successful aging, ” and the aim of this study was to evaluate serum levels of vitamins A and E, which represent two important nonenzymatic antioxidant defence systems, and their correlation in 16 healthy centenarians and two groups of control subjects. Centenarians showed normal values of retinol (450.9±240.3ng/mL) and α-tocopherol (9220.2±3410.9ng/mL). Moreover, a significant direct correlation between the two vitamins was observed in centenarians (Rho=0.715, p=0.0056), such as in younger control subjects (Rho=0.618, p=0.0168), but not in older control subjects. We assume that the preservation of normal values and the correlation between vitamin A and E concentrations protects centenarians against oxidative stress and contributes to their extreme longevity.