Disparities in the pace of biological aging among midlife adults of the same chronological age have implications for future frailty risk and policy.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Some humans age faster than others. Variation in biological aging can be measured in midlife, but the implications of this variation are poorly understood. We tested associations between midlife biological aging and indicators of future frailty-risk in the Dunedin cohort of 1037 infants born the same year and followed to age 45. Participants' Pace of Aging was quantified by tracking declining function in 19 biomarkers indexing the cardiovascular, metabolic, renal, immune, dental, and pulmonary systems across ages 26, 32, 38, and 45 years. At age 45 in 2019, participants with faster Pace of Aging had more cognitive difficulties, signs of advanced brain aging, diminished sensory-motor functions, older appearance, and more pessimistic perceptions of aging. People who are aging more rapidly than same-age peers in midlife may prematurely need supports to sustain independence that are usually reserved for older adults. Chronological age does not adequately identify need for such supports.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Elliott, ML; Caspi, A; Houts, RM; Ambler, A; Broadbent, JM; Hancox, RJ; Harrington, H; Hogan, S; Keenan, R; Knodt, A; Leung, JH; Melzer, TR; Purdy, SC; Ramrakha, S; Richmond-Rakerd, LS; Righarts, A; Sugden, K; Thomson, WM; Thorne, PR; Williams, BS; Wilson, G; Hariri, AR; Poulton, R; Moffitt, TE

Published Date

  • March 15, 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 1 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 295 - 308

PubMed ID

  • 33796868

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC8009092

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2662-8465

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2662-8465

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1038/s43587-021-00044-4


  • eng