Research Papers: Gerotarget (Focus on Aging):

Lipid and Alzheimer’s disease genes associated with healthy aging and longevity in healthy oldest-old

Lauren C. Tindale, Stephen Leach, John J. Spinelli and Angela R. Brooks-Wilson _

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:20612-20621. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.15296

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Lauren C. Tindale1,2, Stephen Leach1, John J. Spinelli3,4 and Angela R. Brooks-Wilson1,2

1 Canada’s Michael Smith Genome Sciences Centre, British Columbia Cancer Agency, Vancouver, B.C., Canada

2 Department of Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, B.C., Canada

3 Cancer Control Research, British Columbia Cancer Agency, Vancouver, B.C., Canada

4 School of Population and Public Health, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C., Canada

Correspondence to:

Angela R. Brooks-Wilson, email:

Keywords: healthy aging, longevity, Alzheimer’s disease, APOE, buffering, epistasis, Gerotarget

Received: August 24, 2016 Accepted: January 08, 2017 Published: February 11, 2017


Several studies have found that long-lived individuals do not appear to carry lower numbers of common disease-associated variants than ordinary people; it has been hypothesized that they may instead carry protective variants. An intriguing type of protective variant is buffering variants that protect against variants that have deleterious effects. We genotyped 18 variants in 15 genes related to longevity or healthy aging that had been previously reported as having a gene-gene interaction or buffering effect. We compared a group of 446 healthy oldest-old ‘Super-Seniors’ (individuals 85 or older who have never been diagnosed with cancer, cardiovascular disease, dementia, diabetes or major pulmonary disease) to 421 random population-based midlife controls. Cases and controls were of European ancestry. Association tests of individual SNPs showed that Super-Seniors were less likely than controls to carry an APOEε4 allele or a haptoglobin HP2 allele. Interactions between APOE/FOXO3, APOE/CRYL1, and LPA/CRYL1 did not remain significant after multiple testing correction. In a network analysis of the candidate genes, lipid and cholesterol metabolism was a common theme. APOE, HP, and CRYL1 have all been associated with Alzheimer’s Disease, the pathology of which involves lipid and cholesterol pathways. Age-related changes in lipid and cholesterol maintenance, particularly in the brain, may be central to healthy aging and longevity.

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