Perhaps the aging process can’t be stopped. But it can be predicted – thanks to a new study,
which indicates that people may live longer and lead healthier lives as a result.
Researchers at Tel Aviv University have carried out the study and found that how fast one will age is written in one’s bones because the speed of physical aging is strongly influenced by genetics. They have also developed a biological marker that represents the age of a body’s bones.
3D Micro Architecture of a rat vertebrae observed with 3D Micro Computed Tomograph.
According to lead researcher Leonid Kalichman of Boston University, “Christened the osseographic score, this new marker can be used by doctors as a scientific tool for predicting a person’s general functioning and lifespan.
“If a doctor can determine that a person is aging biologically faster than he or she should, measures such as vitamin supplements and exercise can help slow down the process.
“While different biomarkers such as grey hair, wrinkles or elasticity of the skin can help us estimate a person’s biological age, these features are hard to quantify. But with the new OSS biomarker, and treatment at a younger age, at age 90 people can function as though they are 30,” says Kalichman.
He predicts that biological aging will be an increasingly hot topic of study in the coming years, especially in the western world where people are living longer than ever before.
In their study, the researchers investigated the bones of about 400 Russian families – 787 men, 18 to 89 years old, and 723 women, 18 to 90 years old. The results indicated that men and women inherit different aging patterns.
In men, the genes expressed are more likely to influence how quickly they will age. For women, the genes are more likely to represent at what age visible changes in the bone will begin to appear, the Science Daily reported.
The results of this new study will join a battery of other tools used by scientists who research aging and ways to fight it. Kalichman says, “At the end of the day, the quest of scientists and doctors is to help people function better than their chronological age – the age written on your passport.”
Via The Times