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What if we didn't have to grow old and die? The average American can expect to live for 78.8 years, an improvement over the days before clean water and vaccines, when life expectancy was closer to 50, but still not long enough for most of us. So researchers around the world have been working on arresting the process of aging through biotechnology and finding cures to diseases like Alzheimer's and cancer. What are the ethical and social consequences of radically increasing lifespans? Should we accept a 'natural' end, or should we find a cure to aging?View Debate Page
- Philosopher & Lecturer, University of Newcastle
Ground discusses the social and economic consequences of abolishing death.
Typically people get more conservative as they get older. They could become resistant to change, so whats going to happen to innovation? There are questions about society stagnating. Most of us wouldnt want the world to be run by our grandfathers.
Paul Root Wolpe
- Director, Emory Center for Ethics
There is a natural wisdom in replacing us. Theres a natural wisdom in the idea that new people who arise in new circumstances have new perspectives on the world.
Wolpe argues that the Singularity envisioned by Ray Kurzweil isn't quite right.
Glowing dogs and mice that grow human ears? Wolpe describes an astonishing series of recent bio-engineering experiments, and asks: Isn't it time to set some ground rules?
The desperate attempt to keep individuals alive using more and more resources seems to me to be extraordinarily misguided when you're talking about a world where people are dying for lack of resources, very preventable kinds of diseases and issues like malnutrition.
Scientists, including Wolpe, weigh in on the ethics of new advancements in manipulating human genes.
Aubrey de Grey
- Chief Science Officer & Co-Founder, SENS Research Foundation
In this lecture at Singularity University, de Grey discusses his work with the SENS Research Foundation and developments in longevity research.
In a talk at the St. Gallen Symposium, Aubrey de Grey discusses the medical and moral implications of radical life extension.
Humans age in seven basic ways, he says, all of which can be averted. Aubrey claims he has drawn a roadmap to defeat biological aging.
Comprehensive interview with Dr. Aubrey de Grey on his youth, educational history, work in the fields of bio-gerontology and bio-medical gerontology, and more.
With Googles decision to direct its astronomical resources to a concerted assault on aging, that battle may have been transcended.
- CEO & President, Buck Institute for Research on Aging
In this Tedx Talk, Brian Kennedy discusses how aging research can help individuals lead longer, healthier lives.
The current tools for extending healthy life better diets and regular exercise are effective. But there is room for improvement, especially in personalizing treatments.
Recent findings raise the question of whether it is possible to forestall aging as an approach to maintain vitality and delay the onset of multiple chronic diseases simultaneously.
Interventions that slow human aging will provide a powerful modality of preventive medicine: improving quality of life by keeping people healthy and productive while also providing economic benefits for society.
Kennedy leads the first independent institute in the USA that is dedicated to researching aging and its link to chronic diseases. Article begins on page 12.
In this radio interview, Kennedy discusses his research on the Sirtuin family of genes, genes that are associated with anti-aging in mammals.
We may properly hope that scientific advances help ensure, with ever greater reliability, that young people manage to become old people. We are not, however, obliged to help the old become indefinitely older. Indeed, our duty may be just the reverse: to let death have its day.
Longevity science may divide us into treated and untreated: the first living ever longer, the second dying even younger than now.
An argument that society and families and you will be better off if nature takes its course swiftly and promptly.
Our growing power to control human life may require us to consider possible limits to the principle of L'Chaim.
Think how culturally and materially richer we would be if people could live, be healthy, and contribute to society up to ages of 150, 200, or beyond.
Oxford philosopher Bennett Foddy discusses the likely objections to life extension and the exiting new biology of aging.
Kurzweil futurist, inventor, entrepreneur, bestselling author, and now, director of engineering at Google wants to live forever. He's working to make it happen.
Can we argue for anti-aging technology, for 2,000-year lifespans of perpetual youth, and admit death can be good at the same time? Not only can we; we must
If life-expectancy trends continue, that future may be near, transforming society in surprising and far-reaching ways.
For the first time in human history, some experts believe we may be at the threshold of a new aging paradigm, one that replaces the generally accepted limits of human life with more open-ended possibilities.
Despite medical and social advancements that extend life, people are hesitant to embrace longer lifespans.
For centuries, explorers have searched the world for the fountain of youth. Todays billionaires believe they can create it, using technology and data.
These startups are trying to beat Alzheimer's, cure viral diseases, and kill tumors with gold. One common thread: funding from Peter Thiel.
CDC data on life expectancy in the United States.
National Vital Statistics System mortality data filed by the 50 states and the District of Columbia for years 2000 through 2014 were analyzed to determine the number of deaths, age-specific death rates by race and ethnicity, and sex-specific leading causes of death among centenarians.
Overview of life expectancy statistics and the implications of life extension on the federal budget.
Gains in the American life span have slowed in recent years, according to a new report, with average annual death rates flattening for the first time since researchers started measuring them in the late 1960s.
The average American can expect to live for about 80 years. But that may change as scientists develop new ways to prolong human life. In this game, you will have access to seven promising tools.
Can we really cure ageing? Sinclair, the co-discoverer a molecular cause of aging, thinks so -- and he's going to try to prove it.
In what could be a landmark experiment in the study of aging, researchers at the Mayo Clinic reported that if you purge the body of its senescent cells, the tissues remain youthful and vigorous.
At last, a member of the celebrated sirtuin family of proteins has been shown to extend lifespan in mammals although it's not the one that has received the most attention and financial investment.
Over the past decade, rapamycin has shown promise as a drug that not only can extend life by delaying the onset of aging-related diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimers disease, but also postpone the effects of normal aging.
Scientists believe the common diabetes drug metformin could hold the secret of long life and want to start a groundbreaking human trial in 2016.
Americans' rising longevity threatens fiscal calamity and generational warfare. But with improvements in health and political courage, a grayer society will grow in wealth.
Unless governments enact sweeping changes to age-related public spending, sovereign debt could become unsustainable, rivaling levels seen during cataclysms like the Great Depression and World War II.
A generation of old people is about to change the global economy. They will not all do so in the same way.
Quality of Life
Almost all medical professionals have seen what we call futile care being performed on people. That's when doctors bring the cutting edge of technology to bear on a grievously ill person near the end of life. What it creates is misery we would not inflict on a terrorist.
The majority of the world is living longer, but spending more years in poor health compared to 20 years ago.
The survey, conducted from March 21 to April 8, 2013, among a nationally representative sample of 2,012 adults, examines public attitudes about aging, health care, personal life satisfaction, possible medical advances (including radical life extension) and other bioethical issues.