Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Nation Briefing

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Nation Briefing

Article excerpt

SCIENTISTS BET $500 MILLION ON THEORY OF AGING

MOSCOW, Idaho -- Two researchers have bet $500 million on what the world record will be for a human life span -- a jackpot payable long after they're gone.

S. Jay Olshansky and Steven Austad established a trust fund this year with $150 each. The fund will grow until Jan. 1, 2150, when the bet is up and payable to the heirs of the winner.

Austad believes someone already born will win him the wager, living to 150. Olshansky bet that 130 is the top end of the human life span.

The wager coincides with the release of a book Olshansky wrote with Bruce Carnes called The Quest for Immortality: Science at the Frontiers of Aging.

Austad, a University of Idaho zoology professor, is the author of 1997's Why We Age: What Science Is Discovering About the Body's Journey Through Life. He contends that technology will stretch life to 150.

The scientists agreed that simply being alive for 150 years does not count. To win, Austad's 150-year old must be aware of his or her surroundings.

The winner will be decided by three scientists chosen by an international scientific organization. If the winner has no living heirs in 2150, universities will receive the money.

TOWNSHIP OFFERS PARENTS OF TEENS FREE ALCOHOL TESTS

VOORHEES, N.J. -- After spending a night out with friends, some teenagers in Voorhees may come home to find Mom and Dad waiting to swab their mouths with cotton to see if they have been drinking.

The township is giving alcohol test kits to parents free in an effort to dissuade teenagers from drinking.

The township bought 1,000 of the $7 kits, which are available at the police station and a high school.

REWARD HIKED TO $440,000 FOR 7 TEXAS ESCAPEES

IRVING, Texas -- The reward was raised to $440,000 yesterday for the arrest and indictment of seven escaped convicts accused of killing a police officer in a Christmas Eve holdup. …

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