The Evolution of Aging, the Great Transition, and the Increasing Risk of Chronic Disease

This talk first reviews the
ideas and evidence on why
we age. It then describes
the Great Transition –
changes in mortality,
fertility, nutrition, and
public health that have
occurred roughly
simultaneously as
countries undergo
economic development,
passing through the
Industrial Revolution into
the modern world. These
changes have implications
for ongoing human
evolution, but more
immediately, they have
implications for the risks
of chronic diseases and the
growing evidence that is
exposing their
evolutionary origin. It
concludes with the
message that we might be
able to engineer our genes
to try to live longer, but
there will be costs, which
are currently unknown.