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Table 1 Characteristics of the study participants according to physical frailty status

From: DNA methylation and the epigenetic clock in relation to physical frailty in older people: the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936

Characteristics Total Not frail (n = 365) Pre-frail (n = 364) Frail (n = 62) p value for difference between not frail and frail
Age (years), mean (SD) 69.5 (0.84) 69.4 (0.88) 69.6 (0.81) 69.5 (0.70) 0.61
Female, number (%) 398 (50.3) 184 (50.4) 181 (49.7) 33 (53.2) 0.17
Epigenetic clock measures (years), mean (SD)
 Extrinsic epigenetic age acceleration − 0.39 (7.11) − 1.03 (7.55) − 0.08 (6.73) 1.50 (6.12) 0.013
 Intrinsic epigenetic age acceleration − 0.45 (5.99) − 0.78 (6.34) − 0.23 (5.68) 0.20 (5.65) 0.254
Number of chronic physical illnesses, median (IQR) 1 (0–2) 1 (0–1) 1 (0–2) 2 (1–2) 0.0001
Smoking status, number (%)
 Never 374 (47.3) 182 (49.9) 168 (46.2) 24 (38.7) 0.005
 Ex-smoker 334 (42.2) 154 (42.2) 155 (42.6) 25 (40.3)  
 Current smoker 83 (10.5) 29 (7.95) 41 (11.3) 13 (21.0)  
Units of alcohol per week, median (IQR) 6 (0.5–14) 1 (0–7) 4.25 (0.5–14) 0 (0.25–10) 0.009
White blood cell counts (109/L), median (IQR)
 Basophils 0.04 (0.03–0.05) 0.04 (0.03–0.05) 0.04 (0.03–0.05) 0.04 (0.03–0.06) 0.096
 Eosinophils 0.13 (0.08–0.21) 0.12 (0.07–0.20 0.12 (0.08–0.22) 0.14 (0.08–0.24) 0.204
 Monocytes 0.49 (0.40–0.61) 0.48 (0.38–0.58) 0.52 (0.42–0.63) 0.51 (0.45–0.61) 0.034
 Lymphocytes 1.73 (1.40–2.15) 1.68 (1.37–2.05) 1.77 (1.41–2.27) 1.75 (1.48–2.23) 0.105
 Neutrophils 4.42 (3.29–5.27) 4.09 (3.23–5.03) 4.29 (3.31–5.36) 4.60 (3.63–5.89) 0.007