"It is true, and thus the question of whether it is sad or happy has no meaning whatever."
Bernhard Schlink

Science is best when discussed: leave your thoughts and ideas in the comments!!

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Long life, Quick Death 

The secret of long life and slower aging may be more simple than we'd imagined, but I sincerely doubt it. A major line of research for some time has been in to the relationship between education and longevity: it seems that more education, in and of itself, improves lifespan and health. One idea is that more educated people are wealthier, and have more access to care; another is that schooling helps build strong social networks, which are beneficial. Neither of these really pans out in the data. I wonder if studies have looked at whether or not the schooling has to be continuous?

Obviously, much of longevity is determined by genetics - people with certain genetic defects don't live very long, etc. But what if some genes are so toxic that they just can't exit anywhere, ever, in any living being? That's what a group of researchers are looking for: a set of 'prime' DNA sequences, that aren't found in any living thing. What an oddly cool concept!

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