Re: Hayflick and others deny major life expectancy improvements

From: Damien Broderick (
Date: Sun Feb 18 2001 - 23:39:04 MST

At 06:29 PM 18/02/01 -0800, Hal wrote:

>Hayflick's comments may have been meant more as a caution that
>progress against these specific diseases won't by itself change lifespan
>all that much. There is a good chance that we will be able to cure
>cancer, but the methods used won't necessarily lead immediately and
>directly to cures for other diseases.

Fair enough, on the face of it. However, the story I was quoting from
carried extra negative memetic freight. Here's some more:


>Experts Doubt That Extreme Life Expectancy Possible for Humans
>by Paul Recer
>The Associated Press
>Claims by some scientists that humans in this century will have a life
expectancy of 100 or even 120 are not realistic and not supported by the
trends measuring the rates of death, said S. Jay Olshansky of the
University of Illinois, Chicago.
>"We anticipate that many people here today will live long enough to
witness a life expectancy of 85 years, but everybody alive today will be
long dead before a life expectancy of 100 is achieved, if ever," said
>The researcher was the head of a panel of experts that on Sunday analyzed
trends in human life expectancy at the national meeting of the American
Association for the Advancement of Science.
>Olshansky said there are no "magic potions, hormones, antioxidants, forms
of genetic engineering or biomedical technologies that exist today that
would permit a life expectancy of 120 or 150 years as some people have
>Leonard Hayflick, an expert on aging at the University of California, San
Francisco, denounced what he called "outrageous claims" by some scientists
that humans are capable to living well past 100 years.
>"Superlongevity," he said "is simply not possible."

Damien Broderick

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