Homing in on a longevity gene | Science News



Support credible science journalism.

Subscribe to Science News today.


Homing in on a longevity gene

6:17pm, September 11, 2001

Relatives can drive you crazy, but you'd better hope they enjoy long lives. If your family members live long, the chances improve that you will too (SN: 3/10/01, p. 156: Making Sense of Centenarians).

This observation prompted a research team to study the DNA of 137 families with at least two siblings over the age of 91. A region of chromosome 4 harbors a gene that helps people achieve exceptional longevity, the scientists conclude in the Aug. 28 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

"There are 100 to 500 genes [in the region], so we now have to home in on the one or two causing the effect," says Thomas Perls of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston.

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join the Society today or Log in.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content