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Trace element status during aging in the EPIC-Potsdam study

Project Summary

The trace elements (TE) selenium (Se), zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), manganese (Mn), iodine (I) and iron (Fe) have been hypothesized for a long time to be involved in the pathogenesis of major age-related chronic disease, like type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease (CVD) and cancer. However, there appears to be substantial heterogeneity of findings from observational studies and trials. Despite knowing that TE affect each other’s homeostasis and metabolism, studies usually did not consider several TE at the same time. We hypothesize that aging is characterized by specific changes in several TE, which is related to the development of age-related chronic diseases. To address these points, we will evaluate changes in the TE profile (Se, Zn, Cu, Mn, I and Fe) over a period of approximately 20 years among 200 participants of the EPIC-Potsdam study. We will furthermore characterize the inter-relation of TE using multivariate pattern methods and will identify food patterns as determinants of TE profiles based on a random sub-cohort of EPIC-Potsdam (n=2500). EPIC-Potsdam as large-scale population-based cohort allows furthermore to investigate associations of TE profiles with the incidence of age-related diseases, specifically type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease as well as cardiometabolic biomarkers.