The first Australasian conference on centenarians - Living to 100: The Science and the Art - was opened by the Federal Minister for Ageing, Mark Butler, and brought together leading researchers from Australia and the United States.
"The world is witnessing a demographic shift towards an ageing of the population - Australians over the age of 90 are now the fastest growing proportion of the population. Today we have an estimated 3,000 centenarians in Australia and that number is likely to reach 50,000 by 2050," says conference convener UNSW Scientia Professor Perminder Sachdev.
"These exceptional individuals may hold many secrets to longevity, and this conference is bringing together leading researchers to discuss the knowledge gained so far," Professor Sachdev says.
Conference topics included: Risk and Protective Factors for Extreme Longevity, Genetics of Exceptional Ageing, Nutrition and Longevity, Cognition and the Brains of the Very Old, and Living Longer.
Keynote speaker from the United States, Professor Leonard Poon, from Georgia University's Georgia Centenarian Study, shared his experiences of more than 20 years of research in the field. (Watch a video about the study.) He wrote for the Sydney Morning Herald about the art of living to 100.
UNSW researchers presented an update on Australia's most comprehensive ongoing surveys of centenarians.
Other speakers included:
Media contact: Susi Hamilton | UNSW Media | 9385 1583 or 0422 934 024.