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Aging: To Treat, or Not to Treat?


Excellent post.

One small correction: FDA does not regulate Resveratrol not because it is a treatment for a "non-disease" but because it is a naturally occurring substance.
posted by Nenad Ilincic
June 14, 2011 @ 8:23 PM

An intriguing article with profound social and moral implications. It raises the question of when one can really retire and enjoy the fruits of their decades long toil? What about young who continue to die due to various causes, e.g. cancer, diabetics?
posted by Kesav Nagaraj
June 15, 2011 @ 10:42 AM

"If we can prepare for it socially, politically and institutionally, and if we keep birth rates low..."

Your quote above is unlikely to happen for at least another century. Your scientific aspiration is noble and at the same time naive. What would happen is that a rich minority would live longer while the majority of humans would linger with ailments. My advice to you would be not to pursue this because it would fall in the wrong hands, like many other scientific discoveries have done so. All the best.
posted by Bruna Iotti Tapper
June 20, 2011 @ 9:05 AM

This is a really strange gnat for a gerontologist to strain at. There are a million things that we choose individually that are bad for us collectively, and the only criterion the government seems to apply is whether a company can make a profit selling them: for example, burning coal, driving cars, fishing the sea to a near-barren state... Almost everyone wants to stay healthy and active and alert as long as possible. Is Dr Gems looking for a moral objection to this? Or to researchers and corporations that help them to do it?

What’s more, medical technologies and life style changes have been steadily increasing the life expectancy of a 50-year-old in the developed world from 25 years (1970) to 32 years (today). Is there anyone complaining that this has been a mistake?

Certainly human population must be limited, the world over for our own sake and for the sake of other species and our progeny. But let’s start that process with policies and education around birth control, rather than asking people to die on schedule.
posted by Josh Mitteldorf
July 8, 2011 @ 1:07 PM


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