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Women's Longevity Tied to Length of Childbearing Years

September 11, 1997|From Times staff and wire reports

Women who are able to have children later in life may also live longer, according to researchers at Harvard Medical School in Boston. The new study included 78 women in suburban Boston who had lived to be at least 100 and were born about 1896. They were compared with 54 women who were born in 1896 and died in 1969, the earliest year for which researchers could get computerized death records.

They reported in Nature that women who survived to age 100 were four times as likely to have had children while in their 40s than women who survived to only the age of 73. The speculated that the genes that allowed a woman to have children later might also slow the rate of aging.

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