A number of lines of research have suggested that telomere length and mitochondrial damage are linked in some way. The research result below is noted with the caveat that it is very easy to find correlations in aging, however, as aging is a global process in which everything declines.
Both telomere length and mitochondrial function are accepted as reflective indices of aging. Recent studies have shown that telomere dysfunction may influence impaired mitochondrial biogenesis and function. However, there has been no study regarding the possible association between telomere and mitochondrial function in humans. Therefore, the purpose of the study was to identify any relationships between mitochondrial and telomere function. The present study included 129 community-dwelling, elderly women. The leukocyte mitochondrial DNA copy number and telomere length were measured using a quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction method.
Leukocyte mtDNA copy number was positively associated with telomere length. With a stepwise multiple regression analysis, telomere length was found to be an independent factor associated with leukocyte mtDNA copy number after adjustment for confounding variables including age [and] body mass index. Our findings suggest that telomere function may influence mitochondrial function in humans.