The study found that pregnant women may speed up biological aging

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Pregnancy may speed up biological ageing in women, a study has found.
They worked out participants’ biological age using six different “epigenetic clocks” – genetic tools that estimate biological age based on patterns of a process called DNA methylation.
The study involving 825 young women found that each individual pregnancy a woman reported was linked with an additional two to three months of biological ageing, and women who reported being pregnant more often during a six-year follow-up period showed a greater increase in biological ageing during that period.
The relationships between pregnancy and biological ageing persisted even when the authors accounted for socioeconomic status, smoking, genetic variation and the built environment in participants’ surroundings.
The authors failed to find a link between increased biological ageing and the number of pregnancies fathered by 910 same-aged men from the same health survey.
Calen Ryan, the lead author of the study and an associate research scientist in the Columbia Aging Center, said: “Our findings suggest that pregnancy speeds up biological ageing, and that these effects are apparent in young, high-fertility women.
We expect this kind of pregnancy to be particularly challenging for a growing mother, especially if her access to healthcare, resources or other forms of support is limited.” He added: “We still have a lot to learn about the role of pregnancy and other aspects of reproduction in the ageing process.
We also do not know the extent to which accelerated epigenetic ageing in these particular individuals will manifest as poor health or mortality decades later in life.”

NEUTRAL

Women’s biological aging may be accelerated by pregnancy, according to a study.

Researchers at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University in New York examined the reproductive histories and DNA samples of 1,735 participants in a long-term, ongoing health survey conducted in the Philippines to examine the impact of pregnancy on the aging process.

Six distinct “epigenetic clocks,” or genetic instruments that gauge biological age based on patterns of a process known as DNA methylation, were used to calculate the participants’ ages.

Across a six-year follow-up period, women who reported being pregnant more frequently showed a greater increase in biological ageing. The study, which involved 825 young women, found that each individual pregnancy a woman reported was linked to an additional two to three months of biological ageing.

Even after the authors took smoking, socioeconomic status, genetic variation, and the constructed environment in the participants’ immediate surroundings into consideration, the associations between pregnancy and biological ageing remained.

A correlation between the number of pregnancies fathered by 910 same-aged men from the same health survey and increased biological ageing was not found by the authors.

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences publishes the findings.

Lead study author Calen Ryan, an associate research scientist at the Columbia Aging Center, stated: “Our results indicate that biological aging is accelerated by pregnancy, and that these effects are noticeable in young, high-fertility women.”. Our findings are the first to track the same women over time and establish a relationship between each woman’s changing pregnancy count and changes in her biological age. “.

“Many of the reported pregnancies in our baseline measure occurred during late adolescence, when women are still growing,” Ryan emphasized the context. For a growing mother, we anticipate that this type of pregnancy will be especially difficult, especially if she has limited access to resources, healthcare, or other forms of support. “.

“We still have a lot to learn about the role that reproduction—including pregnancy—plays in the aging process,” he continued. Furthermore, it is unknown to what degree these people’s accelerated epigenetic aging will translate into ill health or death decades later in life. “.

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