Humans show no sign of a maximum age limit, says new study

Who wants to live forever – Highlander

Global life expectancy rates continue to rise, which poses the question: will the trend ever stop? New research reports there’s no sign of a fixed age limit for the human body, with human beings set to keep living longer and longer.

That’s based on a study of the lifespans of the longest-living individuals from the US, the UK, France and Japan for every year since 1968 – including Susannah Mushatt Jones, who died in New York in 2016 at the grand old age of 116.

The new paper, written by a team from McGill University in Canada, is partly a response to an analysis published last year that suggested there was a natural limit to the human lifespan, even if we might find ways to break through it. “We just don’t know what the age limit might be,” says one of the researchers, biologist Siegfried Hekimi. “In fact, by extending trend lines, we can show that maximum and average lifespans could continue to increase far into the foreseeable future.”

Hekimi and his colleague Bryan G. Hughes argue that the age limit plateau spotted by last year’s research – levelling off around 115 years old – could be a temporary one, and that similar plateaus and drops have been recorded in the past, even as the overall trend carries on upwards.If the same number crunching method had been applied in 1980, they say, it would have shown a plateau of 111 years or so. In other words, even though this type of statistical analysis suggests a levelling off, the top figure continues to rise.It’s all to do with how the numbers are interpreted, and don’t forget these researchers are dealing with the outliers in the statistics – not many of us live to 111 or 115.

Hekimi thinks it’s possible that humans could live to 150 years or beyond one day, perhaps with new breakthroughs in science or medical treatments to help us along. Source: Humans show no sign of a maximum age limit, says new study

I added the Queen song from the film Highlander just because I love it – Jim – Deskarati

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2 Responses to Humans show no sign of a maximum age limit, says new study

  1. alfy says:

    The unsolved problem is not one of extending the lifespan, but rather one of holding back the ageing process. For most of us, being offered a lifespan of 120 years, would not be a welcome gift if it meant the first 60 years as usual, and the next 60 as a semi-invalid with none of the usual functions working properly.
    Imagine growing up normally to age 40 and then staying at that fitness/health level for another 60 years. Given the exponential increase in human population, and the damage it does to the planet and all the other life forms, it might be better if everyone died at 40, long enough to have a family, and then get out of the way.

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