A trio of researchers from two Dutch universities conducted a statistical study trying to determine if there is a limit to the human life span. According to the data they have gathered and analyzed, they have reached a conclusive answer. As stated in a press release from the Tilburg University, where the study was conducted, the research was "based on the precise age at death of 75,000 Dutch people who died in the last 30 years at the age of at least 94". The results of the Dutch study coincide with the ones conducted in 2016 by US researchers from "Albert Einstein College of Medicine" and published in the magazine "Nature" that came up with almost identical results.

The maximum aging limit

The advancements in science and medicine have helped the human race live longer. New positive developments continue, and scientists are hopeful that new breakthroughs in stem cell research and brain research can help the further extension of human life spans. The recent study by three Dutch scientists from Tilburg University and Erasmus University in Rotterdam give a different perspective.

Recalling the US study from 2016 published in "Nature" which was thought by many to have used flawed statistics, the Dutch researchers have arrived at almost the same results.

Using a statistical method called Extreme Value Theory, and studying a period between 1986 and 2015, they have come to the conclusion that the number of people who have reached the age of 95 in the Netherlands has tripled. Yet, based on their conclusions, the maximum age ceiling in that period did not change, despite all the advancements in medical care, better nutrition, and improvement in overall living conditions.

According to their data, they concluded that the average ceiling age for men is 114.1 years and for women 115.7 years. These figures are quite close to those presented by US scientists last year.

As John Einmahl from Tilburg University, one of the three researchers on the project told AFP, “On average, people live longer, but the very oldest among us have not gotten older over the last thirty years.” The Extreme Value Theory that the three scientists used in their research is a branch of statistics that is supposed to give answers concerning extreme events based on information about less extreme events.

It is often used to predict trends in the world of finance and insurance.

Can the limits be moved?

While both the US study from last year and the recent Dutch study put a limit on how old we can get, they did not take into account all the advancements in anti-aging studies. This particularly concerns genetic research and the use of CRISPR, in which the genes are modified without harming other genes.

The other aspect of research that has to be taken into consideration is the development of medicines that can fight disorders related to old age, like recent positive results in fighting Alzheimer's disease, and even the use of artificial intelligence in research of anti-aging drugs.

While there is certainly the hope of the life extension being possible, researchers keep insisting that one thing we cannot expect is immortality.

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