Helping people live longer has been a central goal of medicine for decades. The quest to extend life raises an interesting question: Should we keep investing in research aimed at adding even more years to the already impressive gains in the average life expectancy that occurred during the 20th century?
We can only go so far. There’s likely an unalterable biological limit to the human life span, somewhere around 115 years (though there are, of course, occasional outliers). Virtually all humans die before reaching that age, most of them before they turn 90.
This limit should give us pause.
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