Thursday, January 08, 2009

New NIH Longevity Study

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-- 'Books Forum' blog
-- 'Health Studies' blog


Here are some really good news for the New Year 2009:

The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) have awarded us with a new 5-year research grant to study the mechanisms of human longevity!

Moreover, when this new research project was thoroughly evaluated by a review panel of 20 experts at NIH, the project was rated as being among the best 5 percent of all approved (scored) applications.

The details of this new award are now publicly available through CRISP (Computer Retrieval of Information on Scientific Projects), a searchable database of federally funded biomedical research projects, by clicking here, or through this weblink:

Here are some slightly edited excerpts:

Project Title:
Biodemography of Exceptional Longevity in the United States


This project proposes to investigate why some people manage to survive to extreme old age (100+ years) and what are the biological and social correlates of exceptional longevity. These are important issues not only for demographic forecasts of human mortality and population aging, and the policy implications on health-care and pension expenditures, but also for improving our understanding of the fundamental mechanisms of human aging and longevity.

The project will take advantage of the ongoing revolution in information technology for human longevity studies to examine the determinants of exceptional survival both on individual and population levels, using a rich variety of the U.S. data sources available through the Internet, including Social Security Administration datasets, Census data, family reconstitutions and validated genealogies, and military draft records.

Recent findings from the Principal Investigator's pilot study of U.S. centenarians, funded by the Chicago Center on Aging and the Society of Actuaries, suggest that differences in chances of exceptional survival as large as two or three times can be linked to early-life circumstances, such as mother's age at person's birth, person's birth order, birth place within the United States, and family socioeconomic background.

The plasticity of exceptional longevity in response to early-life living conditions indicates that environmental and behavioral factors cannot be overlooked in longevity studies. Even the search for "human longevity genes" could be facilitated when powerful confounding effects of childhood environment are taken into account. This project therefore proposes to explore the effects of early-life living conditions, adult physical characteristics, marriage, and reproductive history on exceptional longevity, and will test a number of related biomedical and social hypotheses.

The project is designed as an interdisciplinary study of exceptional human longevity. To contribute to the research infrastructure for subsequent longevity studies world-wide, the Principal Investigator will also develop a database with integrated, matched information on longevity predictor variables, and make it available to the research community on the Internet. The project will allow establishing scientific collaboration of the Center on Aging, NORC/University of Chicago with other researchers to study the biodemography of exceptional longevity in an interdisciplinary context.

Public Health Relevance:

Demographic aging of the United States has profound public health implications, particularly because centenarians (people living to 100 and beyond) represent one of the most rapidly growing segments of the U.S. population. This study advances understanding of biological, social and environmental factors that favor survival to extreme old ages, including early-life childhood conditions, and it has implications for public health policy, population forecasting and health planning.

So we have now an approved research project of certified high scientific merit, and we are open to collaboration on this new NIH Longevity Study !

Please post your comments and suggestions below by clicking here.

Key words:
Longevity, centenarians, biodemography, NIH, NIA, longevity genes, parental age, birth order, early-life living conditions, adult physical characteristics, reproductive history, Biodemography of Exceptional Longevity, Leonid Gavrilov, Natalia Gavrilova, Center on Aging, United States, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health, Social Security Administration datasets, Census data, family reconstitutions, genealogies, military draft records, early-life childhood conditions.

Longevity Science Blog
New NIH Longevity Study
Shorter weblink:

Links to this post:

- NIH awards grant to longevity science blog writer


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Anonymous Anonymous said...

This indeed seems like a breakthrough potential project. We all hope to see longevity factors doublechecked (factors at young-age) and precised, not only to adapt the society to the longevity revolution but also for a better knowledge of how to live long and well.
Bravo for building up this project.

5:27 PM  
Blogger High Power Rocketry said...

I would rather die at 55 after a full life than struggle to meet some arbitrary goal of 100 or 110. What would those last 25 years really mean? When I can no longer do most of the things I enjoy?

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Blogger Unknown said...

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

The article was not speaking about living those exta 25 years in a bed or nursing home but to be able to do the things you have enjoyed throughout your life. Why would science care about longevity if it was partial. Or for that matter who would want to live longer. There is research however of centenarians who still work there farms and land and bring there produce to market themselves. I would love an extra 25 years of life worth living and that is what this article is really about.

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Blogger Unknown said...

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5:23 AM  
Anonymous Prozac said...

i am all about living but i see that you have to have the will and purpose to live if you go home and sit on the lounge every day you will not live forever but if you spend every day in the sun thats no good either you need a perfect balance of natural help and by activating your whole body e.g. muscles,heart,veines and so on you will have more chance of reaching those goal never give up hope PS push past human limits

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