Posted 30 марта 09:57
Published 30 марта 09:57
Modified 30 марта 10:04
Updated 30 марта 10:04
The record of longevity still belongs to the Frenchwoman Jeanne Kalman, who died in 1997 at the age of 122. True, there are doubts about her age, but still it can be taken as an indicator of a person's potential life expectancy.
Now there are several dozen people in the world who are more than 110 years old – this is more than ever. But the chances that one of them will live to the 125th anniversary are small: the age limit has been stuck at 110-120 years since the last century. This has led some experts to argue that there is probably a biological limit to the maximum human lifespan, and it is about 115 years. American scientists who published the study in the journal PLOS One disagree with this: they believe that a new record will be set within the next 40 years, according to NewScientist.
The aim of the new study was not to establish the maximum age to which people can live. Using a mathematical model, scientists tried to predict what the mortality trends will be in the coming years. In the course of their work, they analyzed data on the mortality of hundreds of millions of people in 19 industrialized countries (European countries, as well as in the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Japan), taken from the Human Mortality Database – global statistics on fertility and mortality. The researchers studied information about people born from the 1700s to 1969, and then checked how mortality rates among 50-100-year-olds differed depending on their year of birth.
It turned out that trends in mortality rates among people born from 1910 to 1950 differ from those born before the 20th century. This group reached the plateau associated with aging at an older age, and they did not have sudden spikes in mortality in old age. That is, their risk of death increased with each new year they lived, but to a lesser extent than those who were born earlier.
This can be regarded in such a way that humanity has not yet reached the maximum life expectancy. "We predict that in most of the countries we have studied, the maximum age will increase dramatically in the future. This will lead to the fact that in the next 40 years or so, life expectancy records will be broken," the authors of the study say. In their opinion, several current pensioners may live until 2060. This was probably influenced by improved hygiene and advances in medicine after the end of World War II.
However, the model used in the study has a serious limitation: it does not take into account the biology of aging. That is, when predicting who has a decent chance of living to 122 years, the fact that people's cells age over time and they become more prone to age-related diseases like cancer is not taken into account. Also, the achievements of medicine that can extend the duration of human life in the coming years are not taken into account.
"We emphasize that cohorts born before 1950 will be able to break existing life expectancy records only if the authorities continue to support the health and well-being of older people, and the political, environmental and economic situation remains stable", - the researchers note.