Maximum maximum life expectancy reached, researchers suggest

"Our results strongly suggest that human lifespan has a natural limit," the research says (file)
"Our results strongly suggest that human lifespan has a natural limit," the research says (file)

For all those hoping technology improvements would mean we'd have an average life expectancy of more than 300 years, you may be out of luck.

French woman Jeanne Calment, who died at 122 years old in 1997, is the oldest verified person.

But it's unlikely we'll be living much past that, according to a paper published in the Nature journal on Thursday.

"Our results strongly suggest that human lifespan has a natural limit," the research says.

The average life expectancy globally is currently 71.4 years, according to the World Health Organisation.

In most countries, it's risen consistently over the last century, and the maximum lifespan alongside it.

Now researchers suggested we may have reached our peak and plateaued around the same time as Ms Calment died.

"Demographers as well as biologists have contended there is no reason to think that the ongoing increase in maximum lifespan will end soon," said senior author Dr Jan Vijg.

"But our data strongly suggest that it has already been attained and that this happened in the 1990s."

In a single year, the chances of a person living to 125, anywhere in the world, is less than one in 10,000, the study found.

It's so unlikely the researchers say it's fair to put it at our maximum life span.

Instead of focusing on increasing the time spent alive, it may pay to shift the focus to the quality of extensive life, according to Dr Vijg.

"While it's conceivable that therapeutic breakthroughs might extend human longevity beyond the limits we've calculated, such advances would need to overwhelm the many genetic variants that appear to collectively determine the human lifespan," he said.

"Perhaps resources now being spent to increase lifespan should instead go to lengthening healthspan - the duration of old age spent in good health."

It looks like if you want to live for centuries, we'll have to work on transplanting the mind into a robot body rather than pushing our flimsy organic ones to the limit.

Newshub.

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