Annual Review of Gerontology & Geriatrics

Annual Review of Gerontology & Geriatrics is a magazine focusing on Medicine

Articles from Vol. 27, 2007

Aging: A Genetic Balancing Act
It is now generally accepted that the time-dependent decrease in fitness in most multicellular organisms is nonadaptive-that is, it is not controlled by a purposeful genetic program similar to the control of development. Aging provides no specific advantage...
Centenarian Offspring: A Model of Successful Aging1
The New England Centenarian Study (NECS), which was started in 1995, is a population-based nationwide study of centenarians based at Boston University Medical Center. With significant evidence pointing to a strong familial component to longevity the...
Cognitive Function of Centenarians and Its Influence on Longevity
High cognitive function has been asserted to be an important contributor to longevity in general and especially in extreme longevity. The goals of this chapter are to (a) examine evidence for this assertion in normal and pathological aging, (b) identify...
Developing Models of Longevity
Bernard Jeune, in Centenarians-the Secret of Tales (1994), made the following statement:Due to a demographic shift to the right of the survivorship distribution there has developed a new historical phenomena, a proliferation of centenarians. As the numbers...
Extreme Longevity and Data Quality
Virtually all 17th- and 18-century authors believed that the common life time, understood as a biological limit and not a central statistical value, was not incompatible with the existence of 80-year-olds, 90-year-olds, and even centenarians, that small...
Living Past 100 Years: Perspectives from Anthropology of Longevity1
As an anthropologist, I have spent almost 10 years attempting to understand human longevity and aging processes. I make my observations by living with my subjects over a period of time, because systematic observation is the primary tool used by anthropologists....
Methodological Considerations in Studying Centenarians: Lessons Learned from the Georgia Centenarian Studies1
This chapter charts the development of the three phases of the Georgia Centenarian Study (Poon, 1992). The goal of this chapter is to share rationale, methodologies, design pitfalls, and strategies in studying centenarians. A fundamental challenge for...
Personality and Coping among Centenarians
Even though centenarians often have significant functional, physical, or cognitive impairments, many continue to amaze family members, friends, and researchers alike. Several individual attributes have been used to portray exceptional survivorship traits...
Preface
It was not surprising to us when we learned of the desire to make this years theme of the Annual Review exceptional human longevity. Although longevity has captured the imagination perhaps for millennia, it has been only in the past 15 years or so that...
Social Support for Centenarians' Health, Psychological Well-Being, and Longevity
As unique survivors, centenarians vary in personal resources and social networks, which may influence the economic burden of supporting them and also affect their well-being. This chapter focuses on what may be learned about social support antecedents...
The Familiality of Exceptional Longevity1
THE NATURE VERSUS NURTURE DEBATEThere is substantial heterogeneity in how people age. Some individuals age relatively quickly and develop age-related illnesses such as heart disease or stroke in their 40s and 50s; others appear to age very slowly and,...
The Promise of Human Life Span Extension
The eminent evolutionary biologist George C. Williams once famously entitled a publication "Mother Nature is a wicked old witch!" in which he described the efficient brutality of natural selection as morally reprehensible (Williams, 1995). Williams rightly...
The Trials and Tribulations of Studying the Oldest Old
Longevity is one of the oldest miracles, and 100 is the magic number. Ninety years is old, and 100 is news. (Beard, 1991)This introductory chapter is designed to provide readers with an appreciation of centenarian research in three areas. First, given...