DNA Explainer: Human lifespan can extend up to 150 years, new study focuses on resilience – DNA India


The oldest person on record to have ever lived was Jeanne Calment who died at the age of 122 years in France.

Human lifespan can extend up to 150 years (Image Source: Pixabay)

Written By

Edited By

Shampa Sen


DNA Web Desk

Updated: Jun 2, 2021, 03:33 PM IST

In an exciting experiment, a group of researchers from Singapore are exploring the question of what’s the longest life that could be lived by a human system? Three large groups from the US, UK, and Russia are also a part of the study that analysed the pace of ageing.

The researchers from Singapore-based biotech company Gero in a paper published in the journal Nature Communication point to an underlying ‘pace of ageing’ that sets the lifespan between 120-150 years. To assess this evolution, the researchers looked at changes in blood cell counts and the daily number of steps taken by people. They looked at health data for large groups from the US, the UK and Russia.

According to the researchers, the ‘loss of resilience’ has been found to be the main cause for death in absence of other obvious reasons, like murder, fatal accidents or deadly diseases. Resilience is the body’s capacity to recover quickly from difficulties. 

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The research estimates that somewhere between the ages of 120 years to 150 years, human resilience is completely gone. “Ageing in humans exhibits universal features common to complex systems operating on the brink of disintegration,” the researchers said in a statement.

The researchers are of the opinion that to increase our life span, changes need to be made in our resilience factor and in the ageing process. Otherwise, the change will only be an ‘incremental increase in human longevity’.

It is to be noted that the oldest person on record to have ever lived, Jeanne Calment, died at the age of 122 in France.

Pointers on the research

The researchers in this study created an indicator called the Dynamic Organism State Indicator (DOSI).

By using data from wearable technology, they looked at data about blood cell counts and step counts.

The fluctuations in CBC and step counts showed the recovery time that people take when they experience stress.

The research revealed that the recovery time became longer as they grew older.

The investigation shows that the recovery rate is an important signature of ageing.

The research estimates that somewhere between 120 to 150 years, human resilience is completely gone.

Expert opinion

Brian Kennedy, Distinguished Professor of Biochemistry and Physiology at National University Singapore said, “The research will help to understand the limits of longevity and future anti-ageing interventions. What’s even more important, the study may help to bridge the rising gap between the health and life span, which continues to widen in most developing countries.”