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Association between antinuclear antibody seropositivity and telomere length: a nationwide population-based study


1, 2, 3, 4

 

  1. Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care, Department of Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
  2. Division of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
  3. Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care, Department of Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.
  4. Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care, Department of Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA. cheilonda.johnson@pennmedicine.upenn.edu

CER13067
2020 Vol.38, N°5
PI 0989, PF 0992
Brief Papers

purchase article

PMID: 32301432 [PubMed]

Received: 02/01/2020
Accepted : 17/02/2020
In Press: 09/04/2020
Published: 02/10/2020

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:
Telomere shortening is a well-established marker of biological aging. Whether telomere erosion coincides with age-related increases in antinuclear antibody (ANA) seropositivity remains unknown. Our study aimed to determine the association between ANA seropositivity and shortened telomeres among 1999-2002 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) subjects.
METHODS:
We performed a cross-sectional analysis of 2,188 NHANES study participants with available ANA and telomere length data. ANA testing was performed using indirect immunofluorescence. Telomere lengths were measured via quantitative polymerase chain reaction methods. Applying appropriate sample weighting techniques, we used univariate and multivariate logistic regression methods to assess the association between shortened telomeres (i.e. lowest decile of the cohort) and ANA seropositivity.
RESULTS:
ANAs were positive in 322 out of 2,188 (14.7%, 95% CI 13.3-16.3%) individuals. Subjects with shortened telomeres were more likely to be older (p<0.001), male (p=0.005), and have a cancer history (p<0.001). A higher proportion of non-Hispanic white participants (61.6% vs. 49.3%) and a lower proportion of non-Hispanic black participants (7.8% vs. 17.9%) had shortened telomeres (p<0.001). Shortened telomeres were not independently associated with ANA seropositivity (OR 1.48, 95% CI 0.87-2.52, p=0.14). However, female sex (OR 1.91, 95% CI 1.23-2.96, p=0.006), age ≥80 years (OR 2.06, 95% CI 1.08-3.92, p=0.03), and African American race (OR 1.58, 95% CI 1.00-2.51, p=0.05) were independent risk factors for ANA seropositivity. Neither sex nor race modified the relationship between ANA seropositivity and telomere length.
CONCLUSIONS:
Telomere erosion does not appear to be responsible for age-related increases in the prevalence of ANA seropositivity.

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