'Predict Your Death' Paper Withdrawn

A Science paper that claimed to have figured out how to predict human longevity has been withdrawn by its authors.

Paola Sebastiani and Thomas Perls of Boston University, Massachusetts, and colleagues made use of 150 genetic variations that could be used to predict whether or not a person was likely to live to 100.

Criticism of the paper began to surface within days of its publication. It focused on the researchers' use of different types of genome scanning technologies to analyse different data groups, a technical inconsistency that could lead to erroneous positive results. Science took the unusual step of publishing an editorial last November highlighting a number of concerns with the article.

Academics have expressed particular concern at the researchers' underlying assumption that longevity is a simple genetic trait, controlled by a relatively small number of genes. Previous research had suggested that environmental factors are the overwhelming determinant of how long a person is likely to live.

In his very first story, Lifeline, published in 1939, Robert Heinlein writes about a chronovitameter, a device that predicts precisely the date of a person's death:

"Here it is, boys." The mass of equipment that met their eyes vaguely resembled a medico's office x-ray gear. Beyond the obvious fact that it used electrical power, and that some of the dials were calibrated in familiar terms, a casual inspection gave no clue to its actual use.

Via New Scientist.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 7/26/2011)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 2 )

Related News Stories - (" Medicine ")

Breakthrough In Manufacture Of Red Blood Cells
This blood's for you!

DCS May Extinguish Fearful Memories
Can memories be erased? Is it possible to remove the fear component from a memory?

'Predict Your Death' Paper Withdrawn
How long have _you_ got?

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Zephyr Solar-Electric Stratospheric Drone
'The planes flew continuously, twenty-four hours a day...'

Robot Hummingbird Hovers Biomimetically
'With a buzz... it started out on its journey.'

Harvest Water From Air With Sunlight
'The atmosphere yielded its moisture with reluctance.'

Capitalist Big Brother Co-Opts Regular Big Brother
'It was even conceivable that they watched everybody all the time.'

A Floating Cosmodrome
'...a single perfectly level platform, which rose so high above the water that it was not splashed by the waves.'

First Artificial Memory Formed In Animals
'Is an extra-factual memory that convincing?' Quail asked.

Maintain Your Megastructure
Megastructures have repair robots, which have repair robots, ad infinitum.

Venezuelans Teaching Your Self-Driving Car
‘She wouldn't stop until Antar had told her everything he knew...’

Robothread Robotic Worms Crawling Through Your Brain
Perfect for clot-busting in the human brain. No Raquel Welch and no lasers, though.

Vantablack BMW X6 Is Douglas Adams Approved
'It's so... black!' said Ford Prefect.

Humanoid Robot's Muscles Biomimic Ours
'It is remarkable that the long leverages of their machines are in most cases actuated by a sort of sham musculature...'

Animatronic Robotic Baby Exposed
'The birth of Machine, my robot child...'

Beijing HaiDiLao Robotic Hotpot Restaurant Now Flavored By Artificial Intelligence
'Kantos Kan led me to one of these gorgeous eating places where we were served entirely by mechanical apparatus.'

Plants of the Future - What Should They Be Like
'He almost choked in his astonishment. Mashed potatoes and brown gravy!'

China Deploys Robot Traffic Police
'The robot came up smooth and fast as a rocket...'

Better Than Dune Chromoplastic? This Guy Might Have Done It
'But when Old Father Sun departs, the chromoplastic reverts to transparency in the dark.'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.