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New Life on Long Life

A paper on human longevity that was retracted by Science over the summer has been published in a new form by PLoS One, reports Retraction Watch. In the original paper, Sebastiani et al. reported finding a number of SNPs associated with long life, and that those SNPs could be used to predict "exceptional longevity." The paper was retracted due to technical errors that, when corrected, changed the analysis "to the point of becoming a new report," the authors said in their retraction note.

In their new paper in PLoS One, the authors report that about 90 percent of centenarians have a gene signature that predicts long life. "These preliminary data suggest that exceptional longevity may be the result of an enrichment of longevity associated variants that counter the effect of disease-risk alleles and contribute to the compression of morbidity and/or disability towards the end of very long lives," they add.

A blog post from PLoS One editors says that the new paper is the corrected and peer-reviewed report the authors referenced in their retraction note. "The handling editor, Greg Gibson, made the decision that publication is warranted, balancing the extensive peer review and the spirit of PLoS One to allow important new results and approaches to be available to the scientific community so long as scientific standards have been met," the blog adds.

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