Full-dive VR may be 30 years away in 2045
. In theory if you can live long enough technology may help prolong your life far beyond what it may be today. With full-dive VR
perhaps live forever in some kind of avatar? (Personal side joke, if you're in an avatar, do you ever upgrade your firmware? Don't want to brick yourself)
So how do you ensure you live long enough to take advantage of all this cool technology? Apparently Geneticists have discovered a way to extend lifespan to 800 Years. Yes, 800 years!
There is now potentially a way to extend the lifespan of organisms so that humans could potentially live to be 800 years old. Scientists at the University of Southern California (USC) have announced that they've extended the lifespan of yeast bacteria tenfold — and the method they used might easily translate into humans. It involves modifying two genes, and cutting down your calorie intake. Tests have already started on people in Ecuador.
From their announcement:
Researchers have created baker's yeast capable of living to 800 in yeast years without apparent side effects. The basic but important discovery, achieved through a combination of dietary and genetic changes, brings scientists closer to controlling the survival and health of the unit of all living systems: the cell. "We're setting the foundation for reprogramming healthy life," says study leader Valter Longo of the University of Southern California.
Longo's group put baker's yeast on a calorie-restricted diet and knocked out two genes - RAS2 and SCH9 - that promote aging in yeast and cancer in humans.
"We got a 10-fold life span extension that is, I think, the longest one that has ever been achieved in any organism," Longo says. Normal yeast organisms live about a week.
"I would say 10-fold is pretty significant," says Anna McCormick, chief of the genetics and cell biology branch at the National Institute on Aging (NIA) and Longo's program officer. The NIA funds such research in the hope of extending healthy life span in humans through the development of drugs that mimic the life-prolonging techniques used by Longo and others, McCormick adds.
Baker's yeast is one of the most studied and best understood organisms at the molecular and genetic level. Remarkably, in light of its simplicity, yeast has led to the discovery of some of the most important genes and pathways regulating aging and disease in mice and other mammals.
Longo's group next plans to further investigate life span extension in mice. The group is already studying a human population in Ecuador with mutations analogous to those described in yeast.
"People with two copies of the mutations have very small stature and other defects," Longo says. "We are now identifying the relatives with only one copy of the mutation, who are apparently normal. We hope that they will show a reduced incidence of diseases and an extended life span."
Longo cautions that, as in the Ecuador case, longevity mutations tend to come with severe growth deficits and other health problems. Finding drugs to extend the human life span without side effects will not be easy.
800 years? The real Star Trek, here we come!
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