How long can humans live? We ask an expert

Setting our upper limit at a mere 150 might sound daft 10,000 years from now, says Prof Richard Faragher

Last year a study suggested there was a hard limit to the span of human life: 150 years. At this point, the study said, the body could no longer repair itself after illness. But how can we be sure? I asked Richard Faragher, professor of biogerontology at the University of Brighton and past chair of the British Society for Research on Ageing.

Even back in the 1700s, scientists were thinking about how far medicine could extend lifespan. Is 150 years the final answer?
Modern humans have been on Earth for at least 200,000 years. For most of that time, people have said: “No man shall ever travel faster than a horse” and been right. So to say that in 10,000 years we’ll reach no more than 150 is a big claim: it suggests that our 300 years of biology has found out everything.

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