Scientists may be uncovering information about our own aging process from mammals other than humans. As our understanding of DNA progresses, researchers are looking more at specific genetic variations that may unlock information about healthy aging. For example, in a recent study conducted by biologists at the University of Liverpool, bowhead whales were the focus of their research. These amazing animals grow up to 65 feet long, and can live over 200 years.
The recent study investigated specific genetic mutations that these whales have, in genes known as ERCC1 and PCNA. Both genes are involved in repairing DNA when it has become damaged in the body’s cells. These genes have the potential to protect against cancer and slow the aging process. Scientists hope to apply this knowledge to help prevent diseases in the human body, by finding common pathways and patterns between our genomes and those of other long-living species.
Read More: Whale Genes Offer Hints to Longer Lifespans