Besedišče – prevedi glagole v oklepaju v angleščino. Prva črka je dana. / Translate the verbs in brackets into English. The first letter has been given.
How long do you want to live – to 85, 90, 100 or beyond? More important than how long we live is the state of our health in old age. The oldest verified person to date was Jeanne Calment of France, who died in 1997 aged 122. Now scientists in the United States believe drugs could be on the horizon that delay the d _ _ _ _ _ _ _ (1 bolezni) of old age and increase the healthy years of life. But could such treatments also mean we live longer?
Undoubtedly, according to Aubrey de Grey, a biomedical gerontologist and probably the world’s leading advocate of life extension – the b _ _ _ _ _ (2 prepričanje) that medical advances will enable humans to live for hundreds of years. He has ploughed millions of pounds of his own money into research, and is chief science officer of the SENS Research Foundation, which has laboratories in Silicon Valley, California. He told me: “I’ve yet to meet someone who wants to get Alzheimer’s – ill health as a result of a _ _ _ _ _ (3 staranje) is the biggest problem facing the world.” He believes medicine is close to solving the problem of growing old: “There will certainly be no limit on how long people might live when we bring it under control. “People will still die – there are still trucks to be hit by – but the fact is people will on a _ _ _ _ _ _ (4 povprečje) live much longer unless some bizarre thing happens like we get hit by an asteroid.” Crucially, Dr De Grey believes medical advances will mean we will spend those extra years in robust good health.
The idea is a minority view. But if there is anywhere in the world that it could gain ground, it is Silicon Valley. The billionaire tech e _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ (5 podjetniki) there are used to thinking outside the box and challenging accepted wisdom.
In 2013 Google set up Calico, the California Life Company, whose mission is to “e _ _ _ _ _ (6 omogočiti) people to live longer and healthier lives”. Calico does not court publicity for its research and is based in an anonymous building, without even so much as a nameplate.
In 2016 Facebook f _ _ _ _ _ _ (7 ustanovitelj) Mark Zuckerberg vowed to “cure, prevent or manage all disease” by the end of the century.
Laura Deming, a venture capitalist in California, set up the Longevity Fund, which invests in companies trying to solve the problems associated with growing old. She told me: “Silicon Valley is driven by c _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ (8 radovednost) – the same that drives a 14-year-old to programme computers in their bedroom, drives someone in their 20s and 30s to apply their minds and cash to what makes us age and die and what can we do about it to reverse the process.”
Extending lifespan is certainly possible in simple organisms like yeast, fruit flies or worms. But it gets harder as you climb the evolutionary ladder. Prof Gordon Lithgow of the Buck Institute for Research on Aging runs a lab that studies how to l _ _ _ _ _ _ _ (9 podaljšati) life in microscopic worms and in human cell cultures. He told me: “We can increase lifespan by 500% in simple lab organisms. In more complex animals like the mouse we’ve been able to increase lifespan by 20-30% but we don’t know what’s possible in humans.”
Of course, we should not expect medicine to solve all our health problems but try to meet science halfway. There are things we can already do to increase our chances of a healthy old age.
Near the top of any to-do list is exercise – if it were a drug it would be a blockbuster medicine. All the superagers I met had some p _ _ _ _ _ _ _ (10 telesen) activity they enjoyed. The Sun City Poms in Arizona perform acrobatic dance routines and have a parade marching unit. Peggy Parsons, 76, told me: “I ache every morning, but when you march you forget about it – the more exercise I do, the better I feel.” Ginger Price, 84, said: “I love the Poms – it keeps my body active and my brain working. You have to learn the dance routines and that helps my memory.” It also helps the women stay socially connected – another important aspect of healthy life.
Keeping the mind active is vital: this can build “cognitive reserve” and reduce the chances of developing dementia. A balanced diet will also help.
There is no guaranteed formula for a healthy old age but follow that advice and you too might become a superager.
(Adapted from bbc.co.uk on 20 December 2017)