A group of researchers from the University of North Carolina developed a special test which can determine the rate of biochemical aging of the body, as they discovered a special protein p16INK4a. The protein helps determine the actual degree of age-related changes in the organism.
Recently, the same scientists also discovered that this protein can be found in blood cells and its concentration is directly related to the person’s age and some aging habits, such as smoking and lack of physical activity.
Based on the findings, the scientists developed a special methodology, which aims at determining the concentration of p16INK4a in T-lymphocytes. This blood test helps establish the organism’s biochemical rate of aging; this rate is much more informative to medics than the official, or “passport”, age.
The methodology was tested on 170 healthy volunteers. The blood test was conducted on them and furthermore, they were asked to fill out a survey in order to establish their lifestyle. The study showed a discrete relationship between the concentration level of p16INK4a and other biochemical markers of aging, and such indicators as age, physical activity, and smoking. The scientists were surprised to find that obesity has almost no effect on the concentration of p16INK4a in blood.
Source of the image: sxc.hu/profile/datarec.