How genes influence life span: the biodemography of human survival.

Journal Article (Journal Article)


In genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of human life span, none of the genetic variants has reached the level of genome-wide statistical significance. The roles of such variants in life span regulation remain unclear.

Data and method

A biodemographic analyses was done of genetic regulation of life span using data on low-significance longevity alleles selected in the earlier GWAS of the original Framingham cohort.


Age-specific survival curves considered as functions of the number of longevity alleles exhibit regularities known in demography as "rectangularization" of survival curves. The presence of such pattern confirms observations from experimental studies that regulation of life span involves genes responsible for stress resistance.


Biodemographic analyses could provide important information about the properties of genes affecting phenotypic traits.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Yashin, AI; Wu, D; Arbeev, KG; Stallard, E; Land, KC; Ukraintseva, SV

Published Date

  • August 2012

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 15 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 374 - 380

PubMed ID

  • 22607627

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC3419845

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1557-8577

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1549-1684

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1089/rej.2011.1290


  • eng