Adaptive Senectitude

This is a novel formulation of aging, though I don't think it has any great impact on the justification for repair strategies such as SENS: "In the past, it has been assumed that all the biological and medical changes that occur in old age are deleterious. It has therefore been concluded that treatment and prevention of such changes in old age should increase healthspan and delay death. However, accruing epidemiological and clinical trial evidence in older humans suggests that this is not the case. Some studies have shown that antioxidants and hormone supplements increase mortality, whereas high blood pressure, obesity, and metabolic syndrome are often associated with improved outcomes in very elderly people. Perhaps, some of these supposedly detrimental changes accompanying old age are in fact evolutionary adaptations to prolong life after reproduction in humans. Indeed, a form of reverse antagonistic pleiotropy or adaptive senectitude might be occurring. Some common biological and medical changes in old age might actually enhance longevity and represent novel targets for improving health in older people."


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