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The age-related increase in low-grade systemic inflammation (Inflammaging) is not driven by cytomegalovirus infection

Bartlett, David B. and Firth, Charlotte M. and Phillips, Anna C. and Moss, Paul and Baylis, Daniel and Syddall, Holly and Sayer, Avan A. and Cooper, Cyrus and Lord, Janet M. (2012) The age-related increase in low-grade systemic inflammation (Inflammaging) is not driven by cytomegalovirus infection. Aging Cell, 11 (5). pp. 912-915. ISSN 14749718

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URL of Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1474-9726.2012.00849.x

Identification Number/DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1474-9726.2012.00849.x

Ageing is accompanied by the development of low grade systemic inflammation, termed ‘inflammageing’, characterised by raised serum C-reactive protein (CRP) and pro-inflammatory cytokines. Importantly, inflammageing is implicated in the pathogenesis of several age-related diseases including cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and dementia and is associated with increased mortality. The incidence of infection with the persistent herpes virus cytomegalovirus (CMV) also increases with age. Cross-sectional studies have proposed CMV infection as a significant driver of inflammageing, but a definitive case for CMV as a causative agent in inflammageing has not been made. We studied longitudinally 249 subjects (153 men, 96 women) who participated in the Hertfordshire Ageing Study at baseline (1993/5, mean age 67•5 years) and at 10 year follow up. At both times anthropometric measurements were made, subjects provided blood samples for analysis of inflammatory status and CMV seropositivity and completed lifestyle questionnaires.In the cohort as a whole, serum CRP (p<0•02) and pro-inflammatory cytokines TNFα (p<0•001) and IL-6 (p<0•001) were increased between baseline and follow up sampling whereas levels of the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 were decreased (p<0•001). These changes to cytokine status over time occurred equally in the 60% of subjects who were seropositive for CMV at baseline and follow up, the 8% who were CMV negative at baseline but who became CMV positive by the follow up, and also in the 32% who were CMV seronegative throughout. Factors that positively associated with inflammageing were a sedentary lifestyle and a higher BMI.Inflammageing occurs independently of CMV infection. Vaccination against CMV is unlikely to prevent age-related inflammation and lifestyle factors are the key modifiable variables to be addressed to reduce inflammageing.

Type of Work:Article
Date:2012 (Publication)
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Medical & Dental Sciences
Department:School of Cancer Studies
Subjects:RA Public aspects of medicine
RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
RC1200 Sports Medicine
Institution:University of Birmingham
Copyright Holders:Wiley Blackwell Publishing
ID Code:1333
Refereed:YES
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