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Rockfish that lives more than 200 years unveiled genes for longevity


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Some species of rockfish live only a decade; others, such as the rougheye rockfish, can live for more than 200 years.

The diversity of rockfish life spans offered the parameters for parsing the genetics behind longevity.

In a study on 88 rockfish species, researchers pinpointed 137 genes that boosted the life spans.

Found that bigger organisms often have longer lifespans, as they have a slower metabolism and are less susceptible to predation.

Colder environments can also slow a creature’s metabolism.

Some rockfish use both strategies by slowly growing large in the chilly waters.

Longer-lived rockfish had genes associated with mending damaged DNA and regulating immune system (using butyrophilins) & insulin.

Similar genes have been tied to suppressing inflammation in aging humans

This study “allows us to think about pathways and genes that should be the key targets in studies on humans and the drugs we develop,” - Peter Sudmant, Corresponding author.

Study by UC Berkeley published in Science.

Insights on longer-living species could offer the targets for extending lifespan in humans

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Assistant Professor of Integrative Biology at University of California, Berkeley


Peer-reviewed academic online journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)


Public land-grant research university