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News & Blogs » Molecular Biology News » Keeping your age a secret? Bacteria can tell the truth!
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Keeping your age a secret? Bacteria can tell the truth!

In recent years, scientists have shown how our our gut bacteria can help us understand more about on our immune system and metabolism. Now, they seem to do something fascinating: predicting our age!

To discover how our gut bacteria change over time, Alex Zhavoronkov and colleagues at InSilico Medicine, a Maryland–based artificial intelligence start-up, examined more than 3600 samples of gut bacteria from 1165 healthy individuals from around the world. A third of samples were from individuals aged 20-39, another third from those aged 40-59, and the rest from individuals aged 60-90. They next developed an AI program capable of knowing how our brain neurons work. Next, information from 95 different species of bacteria from 90% of the samples along with the ages of the subjects they had come from were provided to the program.

When researchers queried the program on the age of the remaining 10% of the subjects, they learned that the program could accurately predict the age of the individuals those bacteria had come from, by a margin of error of 4 years. Now, the hope is on combining this useful tool with other predictors of age, such as telomerase length, to predict our age with more precision.


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