“These great ages are not presented in the Bible as if they are in any way extraordinary for their times, let alone miraculous.” — Carl Wieland “Creation Ex Nihilo”
The fifth chapter of Genesis is the genealogy of Adam and Eve. It gives us the ages of some of Adam’s children (and their children’s children). Many times in the Old Testament we see the life span of humans reaching great ages. Many as old as 900 years.
The Bible tells us that:
- Adam lived 930 years (Genesis 5:5)
- Seth lived 912 years (Genesis 5:8)
- Methuselah lived 969 years (Genesis 5:27)
- And Noah lived 950 years (Genesis 9:29)
Many people wonder how, or if this is possible.
- What is the answer?
- Did humans once have a much longer lifespan?
- If so, why is it that most people today do not live to be 100?
What controls aging?
Biochemist Cynthia Kenyon has found a simple genetic mutation that can double the lifespan of a simple worm, C. elegans. The lessons from that discovery, and others, are pointing to how we might one day significantly extend youthful human life. When it comes to aging well, having “good genes” (or rather, mutant ones) is key, says Cynthia Kenyon. She unlocked the genetic secret of longevity in roundworms — and now she’s working to do the same for humans. [ Source/Read More >> ]
Scientists Get Closer to Understanding Why We Age
Time waits for no man, the old truism goes, but in recent years scientists have shown that it does seem to move more slowly for some. Molecular biologists have observed that people’s cells often age at different rates, leading them to make a distinction between chronological and biological age.
But the reason for the difference remains only vaguely understood. Environmental factors such as smoking, stress and regular exercise all seem to influence the rate at which our cells age. Now, for the first time, researchers have found a genetic link to cellular aging — a finding that suggests new treatments for a variety of age-related diseases and cancers. (See TIME’s Health Checkup “How to Live 100 Years.”)
The field of biological aging has in recent years focused on the long molecules of DNA contained in human cells called chromosomes. All chromosomes have protective caps at either end called telomeres. Each time a cell replicates itself (as it does before it dies), the telomeres shorten, like plastic tips fraying on the end of shoelaces. Shortened telomeres have been linked to a host of age-related illnesses such as heart disease and certain cancers. (Scientists have yet to study whether telomeres influence a person’s appearance.) Last year’s Nobel Prize for Medicine was awarded to three American scientists for their work in the field, and many scientists now believe that telomeres are the closest we may come to identifying a biological clock — and our best bet for learning how to stop or turn back that clock. (See portraits of centenarians.)
To better understand the aging discrepancy, a team of researchers in Britain and the Netherlands scanned more than 500,000 genetic variations across the human genome. Using a population of nearly 12,000, they then attempted to pinpoint a genetic link to telomere length. (See how to prevent illness at any age.)
In a significant breakthrough, the team successfully identified that a particular gene sequence was associated with differences in telomere length between individuals. What’s more, the sequence was clustered near a gene called TERC, which is already known to play a role in the production of an enzyme called telomerase. Telomerase repairs telomeres when they shorten. “That was very exciting for us,” says Nilesh Samani, a cardiologist at the University of Leicester who co-led the research, which was published last week in Nature Genetics. “It gave us great confidence that we identified genetic variants on a pathway we already know is associated with telomere length.”
The Ageing Gene Database
Welcome to GenAge, a manually curated database of genes related to ageing. GenAge is divided into genes related to longevity and/or ageing in model organisms and ageing-related human genes. The section on human ageing-related genes includes the few genes directly related to ageing in humans and the best candidate genes obtained from model organisms. Human genes are thus considerably better annotated and may serve as a starting point for future studies, including genetic association studies, or even for exploiting clinical interventions in human ageing.
A list of genes analyzed for their possible association with human longevity are also available. Though deprecated, a list of genes that may modulate ageing in mammals and a list of genes related to ageing in model organisms clustered according to functional groups are available as well.
GenAge is employed by many researchers and has been cited in several publications. It was highlighted in Science (307:187), Nature Reviews Genetics (5:1362), and BioTechniques (39:21).
PS Genesis 5 & 6
Here are original quotes from the Bible related to age of early humans created by God(s):
Genesis 5 King James Version (KJV):
- This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made he him;
- Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created.
- And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his own likeness, and after his image; and called his name Seth:
- And the days of Adam after he had begotten Seth were eight hundred years: and he begat sons and daughters:
- And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years: and he died.
- And Seth lived an hundred and five years, and begat Enos:
- And Seth lived after he begat Enos eight hundred and seven years, and begat sons and daughters:
- And all the days of Seth were nine hundred and twelve years: and he died.
- And Enos lived ninety years, and begat Cainan:
- And Enos lived after he begat Cainan eight hundred and fifteen years, and begat sons and daughters:
- And all the days of Enos were nine hundred and five years: and he died.
- And Cainan lived seventy years and begat Mahalaleel:
- And Cainan lived after he begat Mahalaleel eight hundred and forty years, and begat sons and daughters:
- And all the days of Cainan were nine hundred and ten years: and he died.
- And Mahalaleel lived sixty and five years, and begat Jared:
- And Mahalaleel lived after he begat Jared eight hundred and thirty years, and begat sons and daughters:
- And all the days of Mahalaleel were eight hundred ninety and five years: and he died.
- And Jared lived an hundred sixty and two years, and he begat Enoch:
- And Jared lived after he begat Enoch eight hundred years, and begat sons and daughters:
- And all the days of Jared were nine hundred sixty and two years: and he died.
- And Enoch lived sixty and five years, and begat Methuselah:
- And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters:
- And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years:
- And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.
- And Methuselah lived an hundred eighty and seven years, and begat Lamech.
- And Methuselah lived after he begat Lamech seven hundred eighty and two years, and begat sons and daughters:
- And all the days of Methuselah were nine hundred sixty and nine years: and he died.
- And Lamech lived an hundred eighty and two years, and begat a son:
- And he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the Lord hath cursed.
- And Lamech lived after he begat Noah five hundred ninety and five years, and begat sons and daughters:
- And all the days of Lamech were seven hundred seventy and seven years: and he died.
- And Noah was five hundred years old: and Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
Genesis 5 King James Version (KJV):
- And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them,
- That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.
- And the Lord said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.
- There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. [Don’t miss this post: The Forbidden Book of Enoch ]
- And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
- And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.
- And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.
- But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.
- These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.
- And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
- The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.
- And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.
- And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.
- Make thee an ark of gopher wood; rooms shalt thou make in the ark, and shalt pitch it within and without with pitch.
- And this is the fashion which thou shalt make it of: The length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits, the breadth of it fifty cubits, and the height of it thirty cubits.
- A window shalt thou make to the ark, and in a cubit shalt thou finish it above; and the door of the ark shalt thou set in the side thereof; with lower, second, and third stories shalt thou make it.
- And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and every thing that is in the earth shall die.
- But with thee will I establish my covenant; and thou shalt come into the ark, thou, and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy sons’ wives with thee.
- And of every living thing of all flesh, two of every sort shalt thou bring into the ark, to keep them alive with thee; they shall be male and female.
- Of fowls after their kind, and of cattle after their kind, of every creeping thing of the earth after his kind, two of every sort shall come unto thee, to keep them alive.
- And take thou unto thee of all food that is eaten, and thou shalt gather it to thee; and it shall be for food for thee, and for them.
- Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he.