Men born with a bodyweight of less than a kilogram are 4.6 years biologically older than men of the same age who were born with a normal weight. This is the conclusion reached by scientists from McMaster University.
According to CTV News, experts refer to the physiological stress that affects the baby in the womb, and then in the intensive care unit after birth.
Scientists observed a group of extremely low birth weight infants and normal-weight babies. Using an epigenetic clock - a biochemical test for measuring age - the researchers studied the genes of 45 men who were born prematurely and 47 men who were born with normal weight when they were 30-35 years old.
As it turned out, men born prematurely age faster: on average, they are more than 4 years older than those born on time. Interestingly, no difference in biological age was found between the groups of female participants in the study. According to scientists, this can be explained by the fact that girls are better at resisting stress.