Has the elixir of youth come of age?

Interesting article in today’s Herald that may be of interest:

It is one of the oldest jokes in the gerontologists’ book – if you want to live to a grand age, choose your parents carefully. Jeanne Calment, who had the longest confirmed human life span in history, attributed her longevity – she died in 1998 aged 122 years, five months and 14 days – to a diet rich in olive oil, regular glasses of port and her ability to “keep smiling”. But destiny undoubtedly played the most important part.

We spend millions of pounds each year on anti-ageing tonics, potions, vitamins and creams, trying to stave off the ravages of the years. But our genetic inheritance trumps all other factors in determining how well we age and how long we live.

By unravelling the genetic determinants of longevity, scientists believe they will be able to manipulate them to add not only years to life, but also life to years. An elixir of youth remains a distant dream but medicines to help us live longer and better are moving closer.

Read the rest here.

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