Death comes for all, but aging doesn’t — at least for some animal species.
Two new studies published Thursday (June 23) in the journal Science found that turtles and tortoises have remarkably slow rates of aging. In captivity, without the stress of finding food and avoiding predators, some may not age at all.
“That is super fascinating,” said one study’s lead author Rita de Silva, who conducted the research while at the University of Southern Denmark and who is now a biologist at the Universidade do Porto in Portugal. What makes it even more interesting is that modern humans have yet to unlock this benefit, even though we inhabit a world with fewer challenges to our day-to-day survival than the habitats of our early ancestors.
“As modern humans, we tend to live in really good conditions, so the environment for us would be close to ideal [as well],” de Silva told Live Science. “And still, we cannot lower our aging rate.”
How the turtles avoid aging is a bit of a mystery, but the secret may lie in their shells.
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