Author(s): Coles LS
Abstract Share this page
Abstract An international committee of demographers has created a carefully documented list of worldwide living supercentenarians (> or =110 years old) that has been published by the Los Angeles Gerontology Research Group on its web site and updated on a weekly basis for the past 6 years [see "snapshot" for the year 2003 in the Appendix]. What can be learned by studying this distinguished group of individuals? Also, what are the implications for understanding the fundamental biological limits to human longevity and maximum life span? Our conclusion: Although everyone agrees that average life expectancy has systematically advanced linearly over the last century, it is not realistic to expect that this pace can continue indefinitely. Our data suggest that, without the invention of some new unknown form of medical breakthrough, the Guinness Book of World Records benchmark established by French woman Jeanne Calment of 122 years, set back in 1997, will be exceedingly difficult to break in our lifetime.
This article was published in J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci
and referenced in Journal of Gerontology & Geriatric Research