The obvious conclusion is to become a cyborg and then eventually have your brain uploaded into a brand new genetically engineered and nanotech enhanced body which you then keep young forever via anti-aging drugs and cryo-naps.
The bird was suffering from severe arthritis and was nearly blind; zookeepers decided that putting Greater down was the most humane thing they could do.
Most of us are impressed when our pets live merely into the low double digits. But there are creatures out there that put in some serious time on Earth, especially compared with us humans. Some sea sponges last more than 1,500 years. (See also “How Old Is That Lion? A Guide to Aging Animals.”)
Herewith, six of the most famously long-lived individual animals:
1. Dynastic Clam
You may have heard of Ming, the deep-sea clam named after the Chinese dynasty during which it was born. When it died in 2006, it was believed to be the oldest living animal ever recorded.
This ocean quahog, scientifically known as Arctica islandica, lived for 507 years and came to an inglorious end.
These ornamental pets are prized in Asia, and the highest-quality koi can cost thousands of dollars. Normally the fish live about 47 years.
4. Bird Named Wisdom
An albatross named Wisdom may be the oldest mom in the bird world. In 2012, at the age of 62, she hatched a new chick, possibly her 35th, and she’s still going strong in the Midway Atoll Wildlife Refuge in the Pacific.
Other avian elders include an 82-year-old Siberian white crane, captive parrots that can live into their 80s, and flamingos. Don’t forget flamingos!
5. Slow and Steady
Giant tortoises are famously long-lived: Thomas, the oldest ever known in Britain, died last year at age 130 after a rat bite on its leg got infected.
But there have been older known tortoises.
Tu’i Malila of Tonga Island passed away at 188, while Adwaita in India was at least 150—possibly as old as 250—when he died in 2006. The Galápagos tortoise Harriet, known as “Darwin’s tortoise,” survived to around age 176. She passed away in 2006 at the Australia Zoo in Queensland.
6. Immortal Jellies
Although I can’t point to an old individual named Gus or Penelope (both great handles for marine creatures, no?), it would be a shame to leave out the species Turritopsis dohrnii, a jellyfish discovered in the Mediterranean in the 1880s that never truly dies.
Instead, this jellyfish recycles itself, “aging” backward from adult stage to an immature polyp stage over and over again. Hanging out with T. dohrnii may just be the closest we humans ever come to immortality. (See more pictures of aging beasts.)
These emergency preservation medical trials (some will call it “suspended animation”) will produce interesting results.
“The researchers behind it don’t want to call it suspended animation, but it’s the most conventional way to explain it. The world’s first humans trials will start at the UPMC Presbyterian Hospital in Pittsburgh, with 10 patients whose injuries would otherwise be fatal to operate on. A team of surgeons will remove the patient’s blood, replacing it with a chilled saline solution that would cool the body, slowing down bodily functions and delaying death from blood loss. According to Dr. Samuel Tisherman, talking to New Scientist: “We are suspending life, but we don’t like to call it suspended animation because it sounds like science fiction… we call it emergency preservation and resuscitation.” (via Endgadget)”
A startup company is looking to change the way we understand our health and longevity. They are in the midst of a fundraising campaign on Indiegogo to bring this technology and understanding of telomeres to market. We had the honor to discuss the upcoming implications and learn more about Titanovo’s application and technology from its CEO, Dr. Oleksandr Savsunenko.
““Evolution doesn’t care about you past your reproductive age. It doesn’t want you either to live longer or to die, it just doesn’t care. From the standpoint of natural selection, an animal that has finished reproducing and performed the initial stage of raising young might as well be eaten by something, since any favorable genetic quality that expresses later in life cannot be passed along.” Because a mutation that favors long life cannot make an animal more likely to succeed at reproducing, selection pressure works only on the young.”
“COULD a shiny orange capsule of modified fat help to keep you young? For the first time next month, fats designed to reinforce our cells against age-related damage will be given to people in a clinical trial. The participants have a rare genetic disorder, but if the treatment works for them, it could eventually help us all live longer, more youthful lives, says the scientist behind the work.”
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