Connect

Member Research and Reports

Member Research and Reports

BU Study Finds Families Prone to Longevity Offer Clues to Disease Risk

A study led by a Boston University School of Public Health researcher has found that people with longer life spans also are less likely to suffer from osteoporosis, cancer, and other health problems, suggesting that longevity-prone families may offer clues to genetic disease risk. The study, published in Frontiers in Public Health, Epidemiology, found that compared to a control group, older subjects with family histories of longevity had lower risks for cancer, cardiovascular disease, severe dementia, diabetes, hypertension, osteoporosis, and stroke. The age at which 20 percent of the longevity-prone families had one or more age-related diseases was approximately 10 years later than the controls. “The analyses . . . suggest that this aging cohort provides an important resource to discover genetic and environmental factors that promote prolonged health-span, in addition to longer life-span,” said the research team, headed by Dr. Paola Sebastiani, professor of biostatistics at Boston University School of Public Health.