Telomeres are highly conserved nucleoprotein complexes composed of tandem six nucleotide DNA repeats and associated proteins. Telomeres “seal” the ends of eukaryotic chromosomes ascertaining genomic integrity while preserving all the essential biological functions. Telomere length (TL) is gradually shortened as age progresses. On the cellular level, telomere attrition can ultimately lead to cell cycle arrest and cell senescence. Thus, short telomeres were suggested to cause aging-related pathologies, and long telomeres are associated with longevity. Besides progressive telomere shortening due to the end replication problem, telomere shortening is intensified by many genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors, therefore accounting for the high variability of telomere length observed in humans.

The irreversible process of aging is marked by a decline in the body's physiological functions and adaptation ability. One of the systems impaired by this process is the reproductive system. The consequences of reproductive aging are encountered daily narrowing down the window of opportunities and posing an important diagnostic and management challenge. Mounting evidence in reproductive medicine research include a search for the role of non-invasive biomarkers - such as telomere evaluation – as prognostic value indicatives that will help improve in vitro fertilization (IVF) outcomes and expand our understanding of the mechanisms behind failed ART context. Recent studies offered a telomere-based theory of reproductive aging connecting shortened telomere length to failed assisted reproduction treatment (2), thus it has been suggested that short telomeres in the oocytes are associated with reduced success rates of in IVF.

SPECIMEN TYPE: Blood sample is needed for this test. 1 x Peripheral Blood /EDTA (Lavender Vacutainer) (2ml total) sample is required.

SAMPLE COLLECTION: For collection of blood samples, you should arrange for a healthcare professional to draw the bloods for you according to the instructions, in a licensed medical facility.

SAMPLE STORAGE & SHIPPING: Following collection, blood samples can be stored in the refrigerator until pick up and shipped at ambient (room) temperature (no icepacks required). Samples can be stored/travel safely for a few days under these conditions without problems. However, we advise that you arrange sample collection and shipping on a Monday or a Tuesday so that we ensure timely delivery to our lab and to avoid running over a weekend in cases of an unexpected delay.

RESULT TURNAROUND TIME: Because this test requires extensive analysis, depending on how busy the lab is, we estimate you will get your results within 10 business days from the day your sample reaches us *

Available Tests Code Price  
Telomere Length GSC1002 320,00 €

* Please be advised that the turnaround time for specialized diagnostic tests is indicative and not guaranteed and may be extended due to a variety of factors, including but not limited to need for additional clinical evaluation of results, repeat of analysis in cases of unclear or ambiguous results and need for resampling in case of inadequate specimen quality. Therefore, the results will be available in the indicated timeframe as long as there are no additional overheads, as stated above, that may extend turnaround time.


  1. Hayflick L. Mortality and immortality at the cellular level. A review. Biochemistry. 1997;62:1180–1190.
  2. Thilagavathi J., Kumar M., Mishra S.S., Venkatesh S., Kumar R., Dada R. Analysis of sperm telomere length in men with idiopathic infertility. Arch. Gynecol. Obstet. 2013;287:803–807. doi: 10.1007/s00404-012-2632-8.
  3. Samassekou O., Gadji M., Drouin R., Yan J. Sizing the ends: Normal length of human telomeres. Ann. Anat. 2010;192:284–291. doi: 10.1016/j.aanat.2010.07.005.
  4. Scalici E, Traver S, Molinari N, Mullet T, Monforte M, Vintejoux E, et al. Cell-free DNA in human follicular fluid as a biomarker of embryo quality. Hum Reprod. 2014;29(12):2661–9. doi: 10.1093/humrep/deu238.
  5. Kalmbach KH, Antunes DMF, Dracxler RC, Knier TW, Seth-Smith ML, Wang F, et al. Telomeres and human reproduction. Fertil Steril. 2013;99(1):23–9. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2012.11.039.
  6. Keefe, D.L.; Marquard, K.; Liu, L. The telomere theory of reproductive senescence in women. Curr. Opin. Obstet. Gynecol. 2006, 18, 280–285.
  7. Anifandis, G.; Samara, M.; Simopoulou, M.; Messini, C.I.; Chatzimeletiou, K.; Thodou, E.; Daponte, A.; Georgiou, I. Insights into the Role of Telomeres in Human Embryological Parameters. Opinions Regarding IVF. J. Dev. Biol. 2021, 9, 49.