Viewpoint: We aren’t ready for biomarkers that could predict how long we’ll live

longevity happy woman standing hands on long road x

Over the past several years, scientists have identified four genetic and molecular biomarkers that potentially predict human and animal longevity. The first is the rate at which an individual’s telomeres shorten in length. There is increasing evidence from both human and animal studies that the slower the rate of telomere shortening, the longer that individual is likely to live. The second is the rate of gene methylation, indicating an increased level of methylation was correlated with shortened longevity.  The third is the polygenic risk

The fourth approach was described in a study this year that identified 14 blood-based biomarkers of metabolism that when combined into a predictive score was statistically associated with predicting the end of life.

Related article:  Facing Ebola outbreak, Uganda approves 3 experimental treatments


Several companies are already offering consumers tests to assay their telomere length.

In conclusion, we have not reached the point when it is ethical and scientifically valid to use biomarkers to predict longevity. Assessing molecular or biochemical outcomes that accurately predict longevity will best be applied when we have defined preventive measures or treatments to accompany the predictors that together are likely to improve longevity.

Read full, original post: Opinion: Biomarkers of Longevity Not Ready for the Clinic

Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
GLP Podcasts
Infographic: Here’s where GM crops are grown around the world today

Infographic: Here’s where GM crops are grown around the world today

Do you know where biotech crops are grown in the world? This updated ISAAA infographics show where biotech crops were ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.

We Noticed You Have An Ad Blocker On.

Can you help fund the GLP? We're a nonprofit, so it's tax-deductible.

glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend