Re: longevity

Zeb Haradon (
Sat, 20 Nov 1999 20:12:42 -0800

-----Original Message-----
From: <> To: <> Date: Saturday, November 20, 1999 2:57 PM Subject: Re: longevity

>In a message dated 11/19/99 10:29:35 PM Pacific Standard Time,
>> Thank you for the information. Apparently, modifying the genes of mice
>> extend their life span. If identical modification happened as a result
>> mutation rather than engineering, would the mutant individual have a
>> advantage?
>Yes, provided there were no disadvantages. If the effect were small it
>still be
>lost through drift (bad luck) but 30% is a lot, even late in life.

I can think of one disadvantage to longevity. Generally (and this was even more true in the past), an individuals' offspring care for him when he's unable to care for himself. This minor drain on your children's resources could be enough of a disadvantage to mildly impact their reproductive rates - hence your "long term" reproductive rate (by which I mean total number of descendants).

Zeb Haradon
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