Age-related variations in the methylome associated with gene expression in human monocytes and T cells

Lindsay M. Reynolds, Jackson R. Taylor, Jingzhong Ding, Kurt Lohman, Craig Johnson, David Siscovick, Gregory Burke, Wendy Post, Steven Shea, David R. Jacobs, Hendrik Stunnenberg, Stephen B. Kritchevsky, Ina Hoeschele, Charles E. McCall, David M. Herrington, Russell P. Tracy, Yongmei Liu

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131 Citations (Scopus)


Age-related variations in DNA methylation have been reported; however, the functional relevance of these differentially methylated sites (age-dMS) are unclear. Here we report potentially functional age-dMS, defined as age- and cis-gene expression-associated methylation sites (age-eMS), identified by integrating genome-wide CpG methylation and gene expression profiles collected ex vivo from circulating T cells (227 CD4+ samples) and monocytes (1,264 CD14+ samples, age range: 55-94 years). None of the age-eMS detected in 227 T-cell samples are detectable in 1,264 monocyte samples, in contrast to the majority of age-dMS detected in T cells that replicated in monocytes. Age-eMS tend to be hypomethylated with older age, located in predicted enhancers and preferentially linked to expression of antigen processing and presentation genes. These results identify and characterize potentially functional age-related methylation in human T cells and monocytes, and provide novel insights into the role age-dMS may have in the aging process.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5366
JournalNature Communications
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


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