We investigated the relationships between neutrophil functions and lifestyle factors in the elderly. The subjects (84 males, 73.9±5.8 years old; and 63 females, 70.0±4.6 years old) belonged to a recreational seniors club in Japan. Investigations of the subjects' stress, exercise habits, smoking habits, and alcohol-drinking habits were performed. The phagocytosis and superoxide productivity of the neutrophils were measured with a nitroblue tetrazolium (NBT) reduction test. In addition, leukocyte counts and serum total protein (TP) levels were determined. The results revealed that aging, high serum levels, and stress-coping factors (e.g., having hobbies, keeping pets, and close links with friends or family) significantly correlated with preferable neutrophil functions. In addition, significant effects of lifestyle factors on the balance between phagocytosis and subsequent superoxide production were observed. Thus, the results of the present study suggest that there are correlations between neutrophil functions and lifestyle factors in the elderly.
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