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Manuscript Submission Deadline 30 September 2022
Manuscript Extension Submission Deadline 31 October 2022

Telomeres have been implicated in the aging process and lifespan. The role of telomeres in the lifespan of different species, however, has not been straightforward since long-living species such as humans have initial lengths of approximately 10-15 kilobases (kb), whereas some short-lived species such as the ...

Telomeres have been implicated in the aging process and lifespan. The role of telomeres in the lifespan of different species, however, has not been straightforward since long-living species such as humans have initial lengths of approximately 10-15 kilobases (kb), whereas some short-lived species such as the lab mouse can start with telomere lengths of 50 kb. Moreover, humans appear to have a much slower telomere shortening rate of about 70 base pairs per year (bp/year) whereas lab mice have a telomere shortening rate of about 7,000 (bp/year).

Recent research findings have reported a clear relationship between telomere shortening rate and species lifespan in birds and mammals. Nevertheless, there are still many aspects of telomere length and species lifespan yet to be explored. One aspect is simply the fact that there are numerous species for which telomere lengths have not been characterized. There are also many fundamental questions that can be investigated further, for example:
• How does telomere length vary in lab mice, which can have initial telomere lengths of 50 kb, in comparison to wild mice which can have initial telomere lengths of 10-15 kb?
• How does telomere shortening rate vary in species that are not mammals and birds?
• Are there species with outlier telomere lengths?
• How does telomere length vary in species with negligible senescence?
• How does telomere length vary with different breeds within a species, and how does this correlate with the breed body size and metabolism?
• What is the relationship between telomere shortening rate and metabolism?

This Research Topic is seeking to further investigate these questions, and many more, to gain a deeper understanding of the relationship between species telomere length and lifespan.

Keywords: telomeres, telomere length, species, shortening rate, lifespan


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