Laminins are large heterotrimeric glycoproteins found in basement membranes where they play an essential role in cell-matrix adhesion, migration, growth, and differentiation of various cell types. Previous work reported that a genetic variant located within the intron 1 of LAMA5 (rs659822) was associated with anthropometric traits and HDL-cholesterol levels in a cohort of premenopausal women. The present study aimed to investigate the effect of LAMA5 rs659822 on anthropometric traits, lipid profile, and fasting glucose levels in an Italian cohort of 667 healthy elderly subjects (aged 64-107. years). We also tested for association between these traits and the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs13043313, which was previously shown to control variation in LAMA5 transcript abundance in the liver of Caucasians. In age- and gender-adjusted linear regression analyses, we did not find association of rs13043313 with any of the traits. However, under an additive model, the minor C-allele of LAMA5 rs659822 was associated with shorter stature (p=0.007) and higher fasting glucose levels (p=0.02). Moreover, subjects homozygous for the C-allele showed on average 6% and 10% lower total cholesterol (p=0.034) and LDL-cholesterol (p=0.016) levels, respectively, than those carrying at least one T allele, assuming a recessive model. Finally, in analyses stratified by age groups (age range 64-89 and 90-107. years), we found that the C-allele was additively associated with increased body weight (p=0.018) in the age group 64-89. years, whereas no association was found in the age group 90-107. years. In conclusion, this study provides evidence that LAMA5 rs659822 regulates anthropometric and metabolic traits in elderly people. Future studies are warranted to replicate these findings in independent and larger populations and to investigate whether rs659822 is the causal variant responsible for the observed associations. © 2010 Elsevier Inc.