In this article I describe efforts to build a genetically informative, population-based sample of black twins to study physical frailty and aging in the United States. This project involves the use of governmental registries combined with sampling techniques developed to overcome limitations in the registry data. Two analytical approaches to measures of disability are included to illustrate the types of questions that can be addressed with this sample. These results suggest that physical disability in late life has both genetic and environmental determinants. Only with a genetically informative sample can evidence be collected indicating that frailty may be driven by fixed processes (i.e., disability resulting from activation of senescence genes), fluid processes (i.e., disability resulting from changes in the features of the environment), or a combination of both.
Miles, Toni P.
"Population-Based, Genetically Informative Sample for Studies of Physical Frailty and Aging: Black Elderly Twin Study,"
1, Article 9.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/humbiol/vol69/iss1/9