Tuesday, October 11, 2011

What Do You Think About This?

Read this article (actually the first part tells you most of what you need to know).

Can a blood test really tell you when you'll die?

The science on this is a little suspect, if not completely off base.

It does bring up an interesting question though - would you want to know how long you were going to live?

Basically some are claiming they can do a DNA test a give a statistical answer as to how long you will live, if you live to die of natural causes. Obviously it cannot predict untimely deaths such as trauma, etc.

I see a lot wrong with the science and think there are way too many variables in determining health.

With all of that said, would you want to know when your expiration date is?


12 comments:

Z said...

MANY say that life is sweeter for having been diagnosed with something that strongly affects their mortality......I'd rather do without that 'gift' (so to speak!!), but I have a situation that isn't near that serious (hopefully...) but is reminiscent of it.
I'm eager to see other answers about if people would like their death date.......NO, for me. But...not a resounding no, oddly enough.

Always On Watch said...

With all of that said, would you want to know when your expiration date is?

Nope.

Alligator said...

I'm pretty dubious of the whole thing. In the past decade there have been scientific "breakthroughs" that either weren't true or the media distorted somewhat what the researchers actually found out. Sometimes researchers honestly think they have results which later, cannot be duplicated.

Anytime you hear a story like this, generally it is good wait a while, then check out some peer-reviewed publications. Because chances are, the media won't bring it up again, especially if they were flat wrong in what they reported at first.

I think DNA can be an indicator of possible longevity, but some people beat the odds, some don't. And the person with good genes may get hit by a bus rendering everything moot.

My personal opinion: This is just one more attempt by humans to know the future and feel like we have some control over it.

sue hanes said...

Chuck - Not really.

Chuck said...

Z, AOW, and Sue, I agree. I don't want to know. Knowing would change your life significantly - good news or bad.

Alligator, I think it borders on the absurd. Your right, once peer review has been done it may show to have some merit but I would be fairly surprised.

My biggest issue is that it is not possible, at least yet, to predict how a persons life will go.

They could test me, find I have 50 more years to live based on how I have lived my life to date. Say I have lived a healthy life-style, ate well, not been exposed to many toxins.

Tomorrow I lose my job. I am unable to eat a healthy diet because of my new budget. I have to move to get a new job and move into an area with contaminated ground water. The stress causes me to start smoking or drink more.

Life is way too complicated to do this IMHO.

It may very well be possible eventually to do this, I'm skeptical. I was just curious to see what people thought, it's an old question.

Good point here

This is just one more attempt by humans to know the future and feel like we have some control over it.

Live life.

Z said...

Chuck! You don't think knowing when your life was going to be over would change your life significantly??

Brooke said...

Nah. What's the point in trying to figure out one's 'expiration date'? I could step outside to check the mail and get hit by a bus.

Ticker said...

None of us were born with an expiration stamp on the bottom of our foot.
David asked the same question as to the number of his days so that he might gain wisdom. He didn't get an answer.(Psalm 90)
Now do you think if David couldn't get an answer that some bunch of loony tune researchers can tell us?

And no I don't want to know. I enjoy surprises.

Chuck said...

Z, I think it would make a profound change. What I meant is it would change you no matter the results - you were going to die soon or later

Brooke, get hit while going to the mail for your results - that would be irony.

Ticker, a little arrogance on their part maybe? This does cross into the "playing God" realm.

sue hanes said...

Chuck - I always hate to find out the expiration date on my Driver's License - let alone the expiration date on my life.

cube said...

I don't know if this study has been properly peer reviewed as yet, but as a life-long student of biology, I have long suspected telomere length as having something to do with cellular death. I'm going to keep my eye on this.

BTW I wouldn't want to know my expiration date either.

Chuck said...

Sue, nice analogy

Cube, I don't deny the science that links telomere length and cell life span - it seems feasible. My issue is when you introduce the variables of a real life. I don't think statistics can come even close to predicting life events.