Aging with Dignity

The recent issue of Scientific American, which I heartily recommend, contains a short but interesting article on the two primary ways of achieving even greater longevity than we have now.  One, focus on the specific areas of the body that cause trouble and remove/regenerate/replace them.  Two, and alternatively, examine molecular development way down at the molecular level to adjust cellular development in order to “slow down” the aging process.  I am summarizing, of course, so read the article!  But what strikes me is that while living beyond 100 years may be desirable for some, as a society we truly need to address how such lives will be led, and under what conditions for the participants – mentally, socially, and physically.  Our medical and scientific knowledge, we should assume, will outpace our evolutionary and mental capacities for coping with this knowledge.