New Genetic Markers Can Indicate Lifespan
Researchers from the Swiss Institute of Biochemistry, the Lausanne University Hospital, the University of Lausanne, and the EPFL have identified 16 genetic markers associated with a decreased lifespan. About 10% of the population has some configuration of these markers. Changes in locations in an individual’s DNA sequence, like single-nucleotide polymorphisms(SNPs), could affect lifespan. When indicating genes, the researchers prioritized changes in the DNA which are known to be linked to age-related disease. Three genes could act as biomarkers for an increase of lifespan are RBM6, SULT1A1 and CHRNA5 lower brain expression of three genes neighboring the SNP. This article is interesting because it indicates a way for scientist to calculate lifespans. This idea brings up the moral/ethical questions should scientist look into individual’s lifespan and if scientist can calculate lifespan should individuals be informed of their approximate lifespans?