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Steven Austed interview - longevity in humans


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He used to be a lion tamer - who knew:

Opossums, Hydras And Hummingbirds: What We're Learning About Aging From Animals

A quote:

Knowing everything you do about aging, do you live any differently?

I don't take anything. I don't do any weird diets. I do a lot of sensible stuff. I exercise a lot. I eat right. I don't smoke. Once there's enough evidence, I may try some other stuff. I don't think there's evidence enough in humans to be doing anything else right now.




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"Let's imagine that we discover a gene mutation that doubles lifespan. If this is so great, why didn't nature do this a long time ago? If it has an effect on reproduction or the [time] to sexual maturity, it may turn out — from an evolutionary standpoint — not to be a good gene, but to be a bad gene."


We have some evidence, including from other primates, that variation in time to sexual maturity and gestation period have tremendous evolutionary impact. There is some evidence that the reason modern humans decimated competing groups such as the (arguably spatially "smarter") Neanderthals, is because the gestation period became a little shorter in humans and we outbred them. But natural selection has long stopped in humans, so science is the only way forward in extending life-span. Methinks it's a matter of when, not if. But it's unlikely to happen within my life-span.

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