Thursday, 20 April 2017

Saliva test could predict how long a person lives

According to scientists. a saliva test could predict how long we have got left to live. Researchers found that levels of a particular antibody falls the nearer a person gets to death. Antibodies are large Y-shaped proteins used by the body to identify and fight infection. They are secreted by white blood cells. After a research which took them over 19 years, they found that the levels of secretory immunoglobin A (IgA) fell the nearer the person got to death. The researchers claimed that the chemical appears to be a marker of mortality risk, and is much less invasive than blood sampling. The research was published in the journal PLOS One. Dr Anna Phillips, from the University of Birmingham, said: ‘There are a number of factors that can affect how well we produce antibodies and maintain their levels. ‘There are some that we have no control over, such as age, heritability or illness, but our general state of health can also affect their levels; stress, diet, exercise, alcohol and smoking can all influence those levels.’ ‘Quite how saliva samples could be used in check-ups remains to be seen, as we need to better understand what secretion rate would be considered cause for concern - what we call the protective level. 'We could certainly say that, if found to be extremely low, it would be a useful early indicator of risk.’ Other methods of predicting how long a person has to live have been developed based on questionaires. An online test called the UK Longevity Explorer has been developed which can determine whether someone will live for the next five years. The test could be used as way of looking at overall health by professionals as part of a general check-up. The test was developed by Swedish scientists. Source: Mailonline