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DNA "Telomere" Length Tied to Aging, Death Risk, University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and Kaiser Permanente Study  
11/9/2012 7:20:30 AM

A team of researchers at Kaiser Permanente and the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) has identified a significant relationship between mortality and the length of telomeres, the stretches of DNA that protect the ends of chromosomes, according to a presentation on Nov. 8 at the American Society of Human Genetics 2012 meeting in San Francisco. While a reduction in telomere length is regarded as a biomarker of aging, scientists have not yet determined whether it plays a direct causal role in aging-related health changes and mortality or is just a sign of aging.