A Simple and Reliable Medium-Throughput Method to Measure Relative Telomere Length in Sand Martins Riparia riparia

Steve Smith, Richard H. Wagner, T. Szép, Franz Hoelzl, Mónika Molnár

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

The rate of telomere loss is increasingly being used as a marker of biological aging, organismal senescence, and survival probability. These protective ends of chromosomes act to protect coding DNA during replication and by buffering against degradation from reactive oxygen species (ROS). In many organisms, telomere loss has been linked to increased levels of metabolism, biological stress and disease. Here we validate a medium-throughput and reliable method to measure relative telomere length in Sand Martins Riparia riparia. We performed the qPCR assay on a population of variously aged individuals from eastern Hungary. We detected a significant negative relationship between relative telomere length and age and observed a clear drop in telomere length in older age classes (> 4 years) but no relationship with gender or body mass. Our results in this cross-sectional study support findings in other passerine species that report a lack of long telomeres in older individuals. The method that we describe will allow longitudinal studies of Sand Martin individuals in wild populations to track telomere dynamics related to various life history characteristics and individual health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-136
Number of pages6
JournalActa Ornithologica
Volume51
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2016

Fingerprint

telomeres
methodology
DNA replication
longitudinal studies
Riparia riparia
Hungary
cross-sectional studies
age structure
senescence (aging)
reactive oxygen species
biomarkers
life history
chromosomes
metabolism
degradation
gender
organisms
assays

Keywords

  • age
  • qPCR
  • Riparia riparia
  • senescence
  • telomeres

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology

Cite this

A Simple and Reliable Medium-Throughput Method to Measure Relative Telomere Length in Sand Martins Riparia riparia. / Smith, Steve; Wagner, Richard H.; Szép, T.; Hoelzl, Franz; Molnár, Mónika.

In: Acta Ornithologica, Vol. 51, No. 1, 01.06.2016, p. 131-136.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Smith, Steve ; Wagner, Richard H. ; Szép, T. ; Hoelzl, Franz ; Molnár, Mónika. / A Simple and Reliable Medium-Throughput Method to Measure Relative Telomere Length in Sand Martins Riparia riparia. In: Acta Ornithologica. 2016 ; Vol. 51, No. 1. pp. 131-136.
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