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Growth Hormone Deficiency Not Found to Affect Lifespan

Longevity found similar to general population once individual reaches adulthood

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Isolated growth hormone deficiency (IGHD) has no effect on longevity once the individual reaches adulthood, according to research published in the February issue of the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Manuel H. Aguiar-Oliveira, M.D., from the Federal University of Sergipe in Aracaju, Brazil, and colleagues retrospectively compared the risk of death in 65 patients with IGHD due to a null mutation in the growth hormone releasing hormone-receptor gene, and 128 unaffected siblings from 34 families.

The researchers found that the risk of death was not significantly different in both groups at all ages. Patients with IGHD did have a shorter lifespan than the general population; however, further analysis showed that this was due to a high death rate in females 4 to 20 years old and that the death rate was similar among those 20 years and older. The prevalence of heterozygosity for the mutation was similar in young patients (20 to 40 years old) and old patients (60 to 80 years old), suggesting no effect on longevity.

"In a selected genetic background, lifelong untreated IGHD does not affect longevity," Aguiar-Oliveira and colleagues conclude.

Abstract
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