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Epiphenomenon of telomere lengths: lessons from ulcerative colitis
  1. Ramesh Arasaradnam1,2,
  2. Chuka U Nwokolo1
  1. 1Department of Gastroenterology, University Hospital Coventry & Warwick, Coventry, UK
  2. 2Clinical Sciences Research Institute, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK
  1. Correspondence to Professor Chuka U Nwokolo, Department of Gastroenterology, University Hospital Coventry & Warwick, Coventry CV2 2DX, UK; chuka.nwokolo{at}

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We read with great interest the article by Jones et al detailing TERC polymorphisms, longer telomeres and increased risk of colorectal cancer (CRC).1 Indeed, it is accepted that shorter telomere lengths (measured from peripheral leucocytes) have been shown in senescent somatic cells and also to predispose to cancer. The biological rationale is that telomeres which form a protective cap at the end of chromosomes can be disrupted to undergo double strand breaks, inefficient repair and eventually chromosomal instability. The latter is …

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.