Genome Comparison of 88 Rockfish Species Pinpoints Genes Associated with Long Lifespan; Oldest Species Can Live Over 200 Years; Keys to Longer Lifespan Include Enrichment in Genes for DNA Repair and Genes That Modulate Immune System, and Variations in Many Genes That Regulate Insulin

Rockfish is on the menu around the Pacific Rim, for the most part with little regard for the fish’s origin or which of the 137 species is on the plate--it’s typically identified simply as rockfish or, incorrectly, as rock cod or red snapper. But this seemingly anonymous fish--among the longest-lived vertebrates on Earth--holds clues to the genes that determine lifespan and the pluses and minuses of living longer. In a study published on November 11, 2021 in Science, biologists at the University of California, Berkeley, compare the genomes of nearly two-thirds of the known species of rockfish that inhabit coastal waters around the Pacific Ocean and uncover some of the genetic differences that underlie their widely varying lifespans. The Science article is titled “Origins and Evolution of Extreme Life Span in Pacific Ocean Rockfishes.”
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