Mortality hazard and length of time until death are widely used as health outcome measures and are themselves of fundamental demographic interest. Considerable research has asked whether labor force retirement reduces subsequent health and its mortality measures. Previous studies have reported positive, negative, and null effects of retirement on subsequent longevity and mortality hazard, but inconsistent findings are difficult to resolve because (1) nearly all data confound retirement with unemployment of older workers, and often, (2) endogeneity bias is rarely addressed analytically.
Leukocyte telomere length is widely considered a biomarker of human age and in many studies indicative of health or disease. We have obtained quantitative estimates of telomere length from blood leukocytes in a population sample, confirming results of previous studies that telomere length significantly decreases with age. Telomere length was also positively associated with several measures of healthy aging, but this relationship was dependent on age.
A number of leading theories of aging, namely The Antagonistic Pleiotropy Theory (Williams, 1957), The Disposable Soma Theory (Kirkwood, 1977) and most recently The Reproductive-Cell Cycle Theory (Bowen and Atwood, 2004, 2010) suggest a tradeoff between longevity and reproduction. While there has been an abundance of data linking longevity with reduced fertility in lower life forms, human data have been conflicting. We assessed this tradeoff in a cohort of genetically and socially homogenous Ashkenazi Jewish centenarians (average age ~100 years).
The Journals of Gerontology. Series A, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences
The single nucleotide polymorphism, rs2866164, in the MTP gene, has been associated with human longevity but has not been validated by subsequent longevity studies. Using our population of Ashkenazi Jews, we find that the MTP CC genotype is significantly overrepresented in centenarians and their offspring, as compared with controls (p < .05). However, when we examined MTP CC genotype frequency pattern with aging, we observed a monotonic decline between ages 55-85 years followed by a dramatic enrichment after age 90 years, forming a U-shape pattern (p < .05).
Longevity phenotype in humans results from the influence of environmental and genetic factors. Few gene polymorphisms have been identified so far with a modest effect on lifespan leaving room for the search of other players in the longevity game. It has been recently demonstrated that targeted disruption of the mouse homolog of the human angiotensin II type 1 receptor (AT1R) gene (AGTR1) translates into marked prolongation of animal lifespan (Benigni et al., J Clin Invest 119(3):524-530, 2009).
Texas Heart Institute Journal / from the Texas Heart Institute of St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, Texas Children's Hospital
We report the exceptional longevity of a Bjˆrk-Shiley Delrin-disc prosthetic aortic valve that had been implanted in a man who underwent surgical correction of an ascending aortic aneurysm 37 years later. Upon explantation of the valve, the Delrin disc had only shallow abrasion on the ventricular surface, and none on the aortic surface. We discuss the soundness and durability of this valve in our patient, in contrast with its short functional prosthetic life in other patients. The 37-year lifespan of this patient's Bjˆrk-Shiley Delrin-disc valve is among the longest reported.
BACKGROUND: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small, non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression and play a critical role in development, homeostasis, and disease. Despite their demonstrated roles in age-associated pathologies, little is known about the role of miRNAs in human aging and longevity. RESULTS: We employed massively parallel sequencing technology to identify miRNAs expressed in B-cells from Ashkenazi Jewish centenarians, i.e., those living to a hundred and a human model of exceptional longevity, and younger controls without a family history of longevity.
Atrophy is one of the major age-related changes in the brain. The absence of brain atrophy in elderly individuals reflects deceleration in the process of biological aging. Moreover, results from human twin studies suggest a large genetic influence on the variance of human brain tissue volumes. To investigate the association of brain volumes with exceptional longevity, we tested whether middle-aged to elderly offspring of nonagenarian siblings have larger brain volumes than their spouses using magnetic resonance imaging.
Exceptional longevity is associated with substantial heritability. The ?4 allele in apolipoprotein E and the linked G allele in rs2075650 of TOMM40 have been associated with increased mortality and the ?2 allele with decreased mortality, although inconsistently. Offspring from long-lived families and spouse controls were recruited at 3 sites in the United States and Denmark. We used generalized estimating equations to compare the likelihood of carrying risk alleles in offspring (n = 2307) and spouse controls (n = 764), adjusting for age, sex, level of education, and family membership.