30 September 2021

We want all records…

Scientists have stated that there is no limit to human life expectancy

Maria Azarova, Naked Science

The authors of the new study, using a combination of statistics of extreme values, an analysis of the survival and mortality of centenarians, managed to come to a comforting conclusion: the increase in the number of people who have reached the oldest possible age leads to the fact that already in this century one of us will be able to beat the record of Jeanne Kalman and live to 130 years. The odds are one in a million, but it's not impossible.


The record of the Frenchwoman Jeanne Louise Kalman, who was born in 1875 and died in 1997, still has no equal: her life expectancy is 122 years and 164 days. Although this unique case has been confirmed, many people distrust it. So, some are sure that Kalman died much earlier, and her daughter subsequently impersonated her. However, a new study by scientists from the Federal Polytechnic School of Lausanne (Switzerland) and Chalmers Technical University in Gothenburg (Sweden) admits that already in this century a person will be able to live up to 130 years — or even longer. Although the chances are still slim.

The limit of life expectancy remains one of the favorite topics for debate in the scientific community: for example, the authors of some works argued that we can exist up to 150 years, and others — that there is no maximum age to which a person can live. For example, the staff of the University of Washington, using statistical modeling, recently found out that the probability that by 2100 we will reach the milestone of 126 years is 89 percent.

Scientists from Switzerland and Sweden, whose article was published in the journal Royal Society Open Science (Belzile et al., Human mortality at extreme age), continue this discussion. They analyzed the information stored in the International Database of Life Expectancy for 1.1 thousand centenarians (over 105) from 13 countries, including France and Italy.

"The number of centenarians (over 100 years old) has been growing for many years in many countries, thanks to improved nutrition, health and social conditions, and so on, although Covid-19 has probably slightly reduced these indicators. Our study considers only those who have lived for more than 105 years, but it seems reasonable to believe that the same factors will lead to an increase in the number of "the oldest of the old", — said Anthony S. Davison from the Federal Polytechnic School of Lausanne in a comment for "Gazeta.Ru».

It is believed that the risk of death increases with age: that is, a 90-year-old is fifteen hundred times more likely to die next year than a nine-year-old. But the results of the authors of the new study suggest that in the end this indicator reaches a plateau and the probability of dying remains, one might say, fixed: at about 50 to 50. "After 110 years, you can consider that to live another year is almost like throwing a coin," adds Davison. "If an eagle falls out, you will live to see your next birthday, and if not, you will die at some point during the next year."

It does not follow from this that such people are immortal. For a person who has lived for more than 110 years, the chances of reaching the age of 130 are still one in a million - unlikely, but not impossible. And if there are more people of such a venerable age in the world, thanks to modern medicine, social progress and other achievements of the XXI century, it will become more and more plausible — and one of us, perhaps, will soon break the record of Jeanne Kalman.

"Any study of extreme old age, whether statistical or biological, involves extrapolation,— explains Davison. "We were able to establish that if there is a limit below 130 years, then we should have already discovered it using the available data." Thus, scientists believe, the duration of human life, most likely, has no boundaries. By the way, although statistics show that men die earlier than women, the authors of the new work did not reveal any differences in survival between the sexes.

Portal "Eternal youth" http://vechnayamolodost.ru

Found a typo? Select it and press ctrl + enter Print version