Off-Topic Telomere Testing - Useful? Reliable?

Steve W.

Level 7 Valued Member
Someone else mentioned a Nobel prize for research in this field. I have not looked into the specifics but that does lend some credence to the idea of causality here, does it not?
Not in the least little tiny bit.

The Nobel Prize was for research into telomeres and the existence, structure, and function of the enzyme telomerase within cells (the original research was in protozoan and yeast cells), which can act protectively to preserve telomeres, or dysfunctionally, as is the case of cancer cells (where telomerase is overactive and so the cancer cells never die).

The Nobel prize was for research extending our understanding of cell biochemistry and physiology. It was not research into human aging on the organism level or into interventions to enhance human health. Therefore, the fact that the prize was awarded lends no credence to any conclusions about those topics.

The actual official announcement of the Nobel Prize includes the following passage:
Most normal cells do not divide frequently, therefore their chromosomes are not at risk of shortening and they do not require high telomerase activity.

I have no horse in this race FWIW.
Nor do I. It's possible this research will eventually lead to currently unimaginable advancements in medicine or enhancements to human health. I'm not dismissing the Nobel Prize winning research or its possible future implications.

But right now, telomere testing strikes me more as a source of either needless anxiety or unwarranted self-satisfaction than of useful information (didn't I express that already?).

And of course as a source of income to those selling books and tests.


Level 6 Valued Member
Steve W.....any similarity to the nobel prize given for research into the mechanism of autophagy and IF eating windows?
Top Bottom