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Board Members in the News: Steven Austad and S. Jay Olshansky wager on Human Longevity Limit

Oct 25

Board Members in the News: Steven Austad and S. Jay Olshansky wager on Human Longevity Limit View MoreBACK recently spotlighted a friendly competition between AFAR’s  AFAR’s Scientific Director, Steven Austad and Board Member S. Jay Olshansky, sparked by the on-going debate on human lifespan.

Following recently published findings on maximum lifespan by 2012 AFAR Irving Wright Awardee Jan Vijg, PhD, Austad and Olshansky have  upped their  longstanding bet on human longevity.

The friendly rivalry began in 2000, when Dr. Austad was quoted in a Scientific American article with the provocative statement: "The first 150-year old person is probably alive right now." Dr. Olshansky didn't think so — and the scientists agreed to stake cash on the debate.  Now, Drs. Austad and Olshansky have doubled their 16-year-old wager on whether anyone born before 2001 will reach the age of 150. 

Read more about the wager in Nature:

Steven Austad, PhD, is a Distinguished Professor and Department Chair at the University of Alabama, Birmingham.

S. Jay Olshansky, PhD, is a Professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago and Research Associate at the Center on Aging at the University of Chicago and at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

For 35 years, AFAR has supported nearly 4,000 investigators at more than 500 leading institutions nationwide through over $172 million in grant awards--all to advance research that will extend healthspan, the time we are in optimal health as we age. The benefits of healthspan are multi-faceted and may include fewer year of sickness and disability, healthcare savings, and increased lifespan.  Learn more here.