People born in the fall more likely to survive to 100

July 13, 2012
People born in the fall more likely to survive to 100
People born in the fall, from September to November, are significantly more likely to reach 100 years of age compared with those born in March, according to a study published in the Journal of Aging Research.

(HealthDay) -- People born in the fall, from September to November, are significantly more likely to reach 100 years of age compared with those born in March, according to a study published in the Journal of Aging Research.

Leonid A. Gavrilov, Ph.D., and Natalia S. Gavrilova, Ph.D., of the University of Chicago, conducted a study involving 1,574 born in the United States between 1880 and 1895 to determine whether month of birth affects survival to age 100. Data for these individuals were compared with those of 10,855 shorter-lived siblings and 1,083 spouses to control for unobserved shared childhood or adulthood environment and common .

The researchers found significant associations between month of birth and longevity, particularly in those born before 1899. Individuals born in September through November were more likely to become centenarians compared with March-born individuals. This same pattern held true for centenarian spouses.

"The results of this study demonstrate that month-of-birth effects on exceptional longevity persist after controlling for shared childhood environment and unobserved shared characteristics of parents," the authors write. "The results of this study suggest that early-life may have long-lasting effects on and longevity."

Explore further: Preterm birth associated with higher risk of death in early childhood, young adulthood

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5 comments

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Papix
not rated yet Jul 13, 2012
Would this hold true for people in the southern hemisphere being born during the Southern hemisphere fall?
alfie_null
not rated yet Jul 14, 2012
Correlation to latitude (i.e. how far from the equator) might also be useful. The U.S. has a limited range of latitude, though.
ProfSLW
not rated yet Jul 14, 2012
Where's the WHY? Doesn't a science article (not to mention researcher) have an obligation to EXPLAIN the phenomenon, even if speculative? Here's a theory: more flu and other diseases in the winter months for the mother -- affecting (weakening) the fetus as it develops.
gmurphy
not rated yet Jul 16, 2012
The only possible explanation I can think of is that the summer/fall gestation period has a significantly lower probability of causing illness in the mother, which in turn impacts on the life expectancy of the phenotype.
ArtflDgr
1 / 5 (1) Jul 16, 2012
the why is easy....
children born to women who had the spring and summer to eat and eat fresh did better than those who did not have that advantage...

today, the differences would not be so pronounced given cross season eating of foods thanks to global farming and global shipping

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