Breakthrough pill to help people live to 100

The pill is based on immitating [sic] the effects of three super-genes that make people 20 times more likely to live to be 100 and 80 percent less likely to develop Alzheimer’s or other similar diseases. The new pill is expected to be ready for testing within three years.

This would be awesome!  Not only give a nice extension on ones lifespan but to reduce the chances of Alzheimer’s or other similar diseases.

Sounds too good to be true?

Possibly, The quest for the philosopher's stone goes back for millennium and shows up in speculative fiction in many forms.  My first reaction to this is to sigh and think ‘ah, another snake oil salesman.’  What is fun with this pill concept is that they gave it some credibility by tying it to the longevity effects of genes.

There is ongoing research into human longevity.  Most of the successful results are tied to tweaking the subjects (mostly worms) genes.  A while back I watched a fascinating news piece on the longevity research and it’s results.  They were successful in extending even doubling the life span but there was a catch.  It doubled all of the lifespan which means twice as long as an infant, puberty twice as long, and the declining years taking twice as long.  Would this extension and payoff for the extension of life really be any increase in the quality of life?

The ethical questions raised were fascinating.  If one could live longer what quality of life would they get for it?

Would you be willing to take a pill to extend your life to 100 years?  Would you still be willing to take a pill if it had to be taken on a regular basis?

(via Unexplained Mysteries)