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Acid phosphatase (ACP1) is a polymorphic enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of flavin-mononucleotide (FMN) to riboflavin and regulates the cellular concentration of flavin-adenine-dinucleotide (FAD) and, consequently, energy metabolism. Its activity is modulated by adenosine deaminase locus 1 (ADA1) genotype. The aim of our work is to verify whether individuals with a high proportion of ACP1 f-isozyme and carrying the ADA1*2 allele, displaying the highest phosphatase activity, may have a higher life expectancy.

Genomic DNA was extracted from the peripheral blood of 569 females and 509 males (18 to 106 years of age) randomly recruited from Central Italy. These samples were subdivided into three sex-specific age groups (the ages of women are in square bracket): Class 1: age <66 [<73]; Class 2: ages 66 to 88 [73 to 91]; Class 3: age >88 [>91]. ACP1and ADA1 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were genotyped by restriction fragment length polymorphism-polymerase chain reaction (RFLP-PCR) methods and statistical analyses were performed with SPSS 14.0. The results showed a larger proportion of Class 3 individuals displaying high ACP1 f-isozyme concentration and carrying the ADA1*2 allele than those individuals of Class 2 and Class 2 plus Class 1. Thus, we postulate that in Class 3 individuals the high phosphatase activity, resulting from the combined presence of high ACP1 f-isozyme concentration and the ADA1*2 allele, lowers the rate of glycolysis that may reduce the amount of metabolic calories and, in turn, activate Sirtuin genes that protect cells against age-related diseases.