What is Epigenetic Testing?
- Epigenetic testing is the most accurate, revolutionary, biological age predictor. Biological age is a measurement of your age, based on various biomarkers.
- Using state-of-the-art technology and a powerful algorithm, we are able to look at specific locations on your DNA, allowing us to predict your biological age!
- Epigenetic Testing is now available at Alternity Healthcare or can be delivered straight to your doorstep!
How can I Determine my Biological Age?
Everyone knows their chronological age. Chronological age is the number of candles that are on top of your cake and the birthdays you celebrate (or sometimes don’t!). However, developments in science have created another measurement of age called biologic or epigenetic age. Unlike chronological age, this measurement of age is based on years of statistical research and provides much more relevant health information. It can tell us how healthy you are and even when you might pass away. Epigenetic Testing uses biomarkers on your DNA called methylation.
This test involves providing a small blood sample!
Your biological age is more accurate at predicting health span (how healthy you are) and lifespan (how long you will live) than any previous molecular biomarker, and can be correlated to almost any health factor such as physical fitness, socioeconomic status, and drug use history. Ideally, everyone would want their biological age to be less than their chronological age. This means that you are living a lifestyle that is healthy and will help you stay free of sickness and disease longer! If you could reverse your risk of age-related disease and avoid sickness, wouldn’t you want to know how?
How can I Control my Biological Age?
Risk factors including lifestyle factors and environmental factors can impact how our genes perform.
- Alcohol Consumption
- Physical Activity
- Working Habits
Your biological age can be reversed, so it is crucial to understand DNA methylation changes through utilizing Epigenetic testing. Since we know that it can be reversed, we can apply changes to our lifestyles and use Epigenetic tests to show that we are reducing YOUR risk of incidence of disease and death. Epigenetic testing is just the beginning of diagnostic predictors of disease, but it is one that is linked to all outcomes! By providing more data about your health history to us and our team, we are able to develop tests to predict risks but also see which interventions most reduce this risk. If you reduce the incidence of aging by 7 years, you could cut the incidence of disease in half. We want to do this for our family members, our friends, and the world… but we need your help to do it!
True Personalized Medicine
Most importantly, this gives you a tool to directly look at healthspan and lifespan, without having to wait 40 years to look at the epidemiology data. The reason this science is so exciting, is now you can see if a therapy is working for your own body, immediately! This is true personalized medicine!
What about checking Telomeres?
Telomere length and epigenetics are independent predictors of age and mortality risk estimated by the Hannum clock . A comparative review of different molecular age estimators concluded that DNA methylation is the most promising biomarker for age and age related disease . Telomere length explains fewer of the variances in age compared to the epigenetic clock, but using both measures provides useful information for an individual.
How is this different from genetics?
Epi – is a greek prefix for “above”. Genetics is the study of our DNA. Together, epigenetics means the study of things above and beyond the genome. This means we are studying the changes to your DNA and how it actually affects the body instead of what the DNA could possibly do or mean. It is often more useful than genetics because it allows us to see how the genetic material in your body behaves instead of just seeing what it contains. Traditional genetics is like looking at a light bulb and its components but not knowing if the bulb is producing light. Epigenetics lets us know if the light bulb is on or off.
The link between epigenetics and health has been linked through biological age. This is important because aging is THE leading risk factor for multiple chronic diseases and disorders. Therefore, finding a way to slow the biological aging process is essential. Through epigenetics, we can do just that. Our epigenetic clock is the most accurate measurement of biological age and age-related disease risk!
FACT: 60% of your DNA and how your genes are expressed CAN be modified. Epigenetic aging can be reversed, so it is crucial to understand DNA methylation changes through utilizing epigenetics. Since we know that aging can be reversed, we can apply changes to our lifestyles and use Epigenetic testing to show that we are reducing YOUR risk of incidence of disease and death.
What is your true biological age?
Telomeres are end caps at the end of chromosomes, which protects the end of the chromosome from deterioration. Telomeres are longer in youth and progressively shorten with each cell division until a critical shortening has occurred which signals cell senescence or cell death. Shorter telomeres imply a shorter lifespan for the cell.
Shorter telomere length has also been associated with an increased risk for most of the chronic diseases associated with aging, including metabolic abnormalities, cardiovascular disease, certain cancers, dementia and premature death. Telomere length provides the best measure of an individual’s biological cellular age. Telomere shortening can be accelerated by harmful environmental factors like oxidative stress and unhealthy lifestyles.
Alternity Healthcare is the first practice in CT to partner with Life Length Labs, the worldwide leader in telomere testing, to offer the gold standard in telomere length assessment: Telomere Analysis Technology (TAT). TAT is the only technology in the world capable of measuring the percentage of critically short telomeres within the cells. This is the most relevant indicator of telomere dysfunction and cellular aging.
Why do we use Life Length Labs? Telomere testing performed at other labs may be less expensive, but they only provide the mean or average telomere length. The problem with those results is that the various telomeres within a cell do not shorten uniformly throughout the cell. Life Length Labs measures over 100,000 individual telomeres, chromosome-by-chromosome, in tens of thousands of cells to give a more comprehensive picture of your cellular health.
Through a simple blood test requiring just a teaspoon of blood, telomere length is determined in an individual’s lymphocytes, which is then compared to telomere length in a population of people with similar chronological age. We will review your detailed results with you to fine tune your Peak Health Program for improvement or maintenance of your cellular
Telomere length is a number everyone should know and monitor. It is one of the single best measures of your current health status and how well you are aging.
You are not a slave to your genes.
Alternity Healthcare offers precision medicine to transform your health and optimize your human potential. Recent advances in the field of genetics and genomics have opened a gateway to an unprecedented level of detail about your DNA blueprint. The power to know your genome transitions us out of sick care, beyond health and wellness, to a preventive and predictive prototype for transforming human potential into extraordinary performance.
There are a variety of genetic and genomic test types available:
Genotyping services (like 23&me) that offer limited information about specific bits of DNA that have known functions. Gene panel tests are highly targeted but very narrow in scope
Whole exome sequencing, or WES, is a type of genomic sequencing utilizing next-generation sequencing technology for a targeted capture and reading of the entire exome; the region of your DNA that codes for proteins. The vast majority of disease causing mutations lie in this region. WES examines over 22,000 genes in one test, while most gene panels look at 10-100. WES casts a much wider net, evaluating nearly all of the genomic factors that may impact your health.
Whole genome sequencing, or WGS, by contrast, analyzes all of your DNA. While it may seem like WGS is better than WES, since WGS sequences more, actually WGS has a number of problems. First, WGS is typically done at a much lower coverage than WES to save on cost.
What can I learn from my results?
How can I tailor my diet, exercise, and lifestyle choices to optimize my health?
Which medicines, therapies, and supplements are safest and most effective for me?
Am I at risk of a serious medical problem, and can I do something today to stay healthier longer?
Putting all the pieces together
We deliver highly detailed, easy-to-understand genetic interpretation of your DNA blueprint to identify targeted treatments and programming that can alter genetic expression and optimize health. Unlike most direct-to-consumer genetic companies, our genomic testing partners provide clinically validated results with the highest coverage and accuracy.