Study: Down syndrome may cause faster aging

Down syndrome is a qualifying condition for Supplemental Security Income. Although most people are familiar with Down syndrome, there is much left to learn about its effects on those who live with it. A recent study published in the journal Aging Cell last month is helping to bring us closer to understanding how it affects the lives of many people in El Paso, Dallas, and Austin Texas.

The study found that people with Down syndrome age at more rapid pace than people who develop at a typical rate. The information they collected during this study is important to the Down syndrome community because the current average life span of someone who lives with Down syndrome is just 60 years.

To come to their conclusion, researchers studied brain tissue, white blood cells, blood tissue and buccal mucosa -- or the inside lining of the lips and cheeks -- from people with Down syndrome and people without it. They found that compared to a person with Down syndrome's actual age, his or her brain tissue tended to appear approximately 11 years older. Blood tissue was found to appear four years older than the person's actual chronological age.

This study provides important information about the aging process of people with Down syndrome. A better understanding of how the condition affects their aging process can help medical professionals and others understand how best to support them.

The researchers who conducted this study plan to conduct a similar study on teenagers who live with Down syndrome. They to determine at what point the aging process begins to accelerate. It will be interesting to see what findings their studies produce.

Source: Disability Scoop, "People With Down Syndrome May Actually Age Faster," Shaun Heasley, Feb. 26, 2015