One of the primary goals of the aging research community is to determine exactly how aging progresses from moment to moment at the detailed level of genes and cellular biochemistry. This is a sizable task, not particularly driven by any application in medicine, and will be only incrementally more advanced by the time that rejuvenation therapies based on the SENS model of damage repair are a going concern. The big advantage of the damage repair approach is that it bypasses the need to understand exactly how aging progresses: since the root cause damage is known, it is possible to make progress immediately and quantify the resulting benefits along the way.
If one was to go about searching for genetic contributions to longevity, however, then the method here is a decent way to go about it. The standard problem in this space is one of complexity and limited resources: there are a lot of genes, and only so many scientists with sufficient funding to look for the needles in the haystack. The researchers here reduce the size of the problem by comparing the genomes of closely related rodent species with varying life spans; the set
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