Life expectancy

1000 years of life

Life expectancy of 1000 years

A Cambridge University geneticist, Aubrey de Grey, says humans could live up to 1,000 years. He says ageing processes are reversible and that cells can be "repaired". Ageing is a natural process that affects every living organism. But with the advances science is making, it could be slowed down. The geneticist at Britain's Cambridge University says that in the not-too-distant future old age will be treatable like any disease today, hinting at a principle aspect of the Ayurvedic tradition.

The scientist is also the director of a programme that would produce a method of slowing and even curing ageing. "It's not just an idea: we have a very detailed plan to reverse the ageing process at the molecular and cellular level," said Aubrey de Grey. "We will be able to live up to 1,000 years," the geneticist boldly declared, thus approaching the 960 years that is mentioned in some ancient Eastern writings, where this age is considered a real possibility for healthy human longevity.

Scientist Aubrey de Grey says the method he has developed is in clinical trials and is based on technologies that already exist. Death will still not be ruled out, but "when we grow old we will no longer be those feeble beings who display the devastating effects of ageing and eventually fade away. Of course, people will still die, because of careless crossing the street, being bitten by snakes, a new virus, etc.," says Aubrey de Grey optimistically.

The geneticist said anti-ageing therapy could be a viable treatment in the near future. "Since the therapy is aimed at repairing the collective damage caused by the ageing process, it means we will be able to apply it to the middle-aged and the elderly," the scientist told the BBC. "I think the first person to reach the age of 1,000 is already 60," said Aubrey de Grey.

The geneticist says that such a high life expectancy will change society in ways that cannot yet be predicted, but that the ideal of slowing ageing should not scare anyone. "Some people are so frightened that they say ageing should be accepted as it is. I think that's a diabolical idea: it would be to deny a human's right to life," explained the geneticist. "Others say that people will get bored if they live that long, but I think we will have enough resources to enjoy all that life offers us," says the researcher with optimism and common sense.