This is the first report that age-associated accumulation of 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine (8-OH-dG) does occur in human mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) in muscle of diaphragm. We extracted mtDNA from human diaphragm muscles from differing age groups, and determined the amount of 8-OH-dG by ultramicro-high performance liquid chromatography/mass-spectrometry system. With the same specimen, multiple deletions of mtDNA were detected by electrophoresis after amplification by the polymerase chain reaction method. In subjects below age 55, the level of 8-OH-dG in mtDNA was below 0.02% of the total deoxyguanosine (dG), whereas, in subjects over age 65, the level of 8-OH-dG increased with age at a rate of ca. 0.25% per 10 years, reaching 0.51% at age 85. Moreover, a concomitant increase in multiple deletions was detected with the increase in age. These results suggest that, in younger diaphragms, replication of mtDNA dilutes out 8-OH-dG being not detectable. In the elderly subjects aged over 65, the replication rate might be slowed down leading to the accumulation of 8-OH-dG in mtDNA, which would accelerate the age-associated multiple deletions of mtDNA observed among the subjects.