Cell-mediated immunity as a predictor of morbidity and mortality in subjects over 60

S. J. Wayne, R. L. Rhyne, P. J. Garry, James Goodwin

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Abstract

Previous studies have suggested an association between depressed cell-mediated immunity and increased mortality in elderly persons. However, the effects of age and existing disease on this association have not been adequately addressed. We studied the association between cell-mediated immunity and subsequent morbidity and mortality in 273 initially healthy persons 60 years of age and older. In 1979, two tests of cell-mediated immunity were conducted - mitogen stimulation with phytohaemagglutinin, and delayed hypersensitivity skin testing. The study group was followed annually for development of pneumonia, cancer, and death. Anergy was associated with all-cause mortality (hazard ratio of 2.16; 95% confidence interval [1.10,4.28]). When the results were adjusted for age, the resulting hazard ratio was 1.89;[0.94,3.79]. A relationship was also suggested between anergy and cancer mortality although this association was not statistically significant. Response to phytohaemagglutinin was a poorer predictor of mortality than was response to delayed hypersensitivity skin testing. The results show that anergy may be a good indicator of subsequent all-cause morbidity, and perhaps cancer mortality, in elderly who lack other indicators of poor health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournals of Gerontology
Volume45
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes

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Cellular Immunity
Morbidity
Mortality
Delayed Hypersensitivity
Phytohemagglutinins
Neoplasms
Skin
Mitogens
Pneumonia
Confidence Intervals
Health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging

Cite this

Cell-mediated immunity as a predictor of morbidity and mortality in subjects over 60. / Wayne, S. J.; Rhyne, R. L.; Garry, P. J.; Goodwin, James.

In: Journals of Gerontology, Vol. 45, No. 2, 1990.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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