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Effect of Omega-3 Fatty Acids on Telomeres-Are They the Elixir of Youth?

Ogłuszka M, Lipiński P, Starzyński R (2022) Nutrients  Sep 9;14(18):3723 doi: 10.3390/nu14183723 

Web URL: Read this article on PubMed


Telomeres are complexes consisting of tandem repeat DNA combined with associated proteins that play a key role in protecting the ends of chromosomes and maintaining genome stability. They are considered a biological clock, as they shorten in parallel with aging. Furthermore, short telomeres are associated with several age-related diseases. However, the variability in telomere shortening independent of chronological age suggests that it is a modifiable factor. In fact, it is regulated inter alia by genetic damage, cell division, aging, oxidative stress, and inflammation. A key question remains: how can we prevent accelerated telomere attrition and subsequent premature replicative senescence? A number of studies have explored the possible impact of omega-3 fatty acids on telomere shortening. This review summarizes published cross-sectional studies, randomized controlled trials, and rodent studies investigating the role of omega-3 fatty acids in telomere biology. It also covers a broad overview of the mechanism, currently favored in the field, that explains the impact of omega-3 fatty acids on telomeres-the food compound's ability to modulate oxidative stress and inflammation. Although the results of the studies performed to date are not consistent, the vast majority indicate a beneficial effect of omega-3 fatty acids on telomere length.


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