多生孩子可减缓衰老过程?
生物通 · 2016/01/13
最近,Simon Fraser大学的研究人员进行的一项研究表明,一个女人生育孩子的数量,影响着她身体衰老的速度。相关研究结果发表在1月5日的《PLOS ONE》。


最近,Simon Fraser大学的研究人员进行的一项研究表明,一个女人生育孩子的数量,影响着她身体衰老的速度。相关研究结果发表在1月5日的《PLOS ONE》。

由健康科学教授Pablo Nepomnaschy和博士后研究人员Cindy Barha带领的这项研究发现,生育更多孩子的女性表现出更长的端粒。端粒是存在于每一条DNA链末端的保护性端点,是细胞衰老的象征。较长的端粒对于细胞复制是不可或缺的,并与寿命相关。

这项研究评估了来自相邻的两个土著危地马拉人社区的75名妇女所生的孩子的数量,以及她们的端粒长度。在相隔13年的两个时间点上,研究人员通过唾液和口腔拭子标本,测量了参与者的端粒长度。这是第一次有研究检测,随着时间的推移,人类生育孩子的数量和端粒缩短之间的直接关联。

根据Nepomnaschy介绍,研究结果与生活理论预测相矛盾,后者认为,产生较高的后代数量,可加快生物老化的步伐。Nepomnaschy也是SFU健康科学学院妇幼卫生实验室主任,他指出:“然而,本研究发现,生育更多孩子的受试者,端粒缩短的速度更慢,可能是由于雌激素(在怀孕期间产生的一种激素)的急剧增加。雌激素的功能是一种有效的抗氧化剂,可以保护细胞免受端粒缩短。”

研究参与者所生活的社会环境,也可能会影响他她们生殖力度和衰老速度之间的关系。Nepomnaschy解释说:“我们在研究过程中所随访的女性,来自于自然生育的人群,在这些人群当中,生育众多孩子的母亲从亲戚和朋友那里获得了更多的社会支持。更大的支持可带来代谢能量的增加,可以分配给组织维护,从而减缓了衰老的过程。

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  • Number of Children and Telomere Length in Women: A Prospective, Longitudinal Evaluation

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