Both her parents died young and now a medical advance has left one woman with a chilling choice.
My father died at 47, my mother at 53, both prematurely of cancer, and, as a result, I suppose I’ve always been a little worried that my life might not be as long as most. But, at 43, I now have the chance to find out if my worst fears are true, with a controversial new £400 blood test which can supposedly estimate how long I will live.
The new test, which will be available over the counter within a few months, was created by medical researchers in Spain. It measures the composition of the tips of a person’s chromosomes, called telomeres, which scientists believe are one of the most significant and precise indicators of the rate of ageing.
Maria Blasco, of the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre in Madrid, who is the inventor of the new commercial telomere test, says it will be possible to tell whether a person’s ‘biological age’, as measured by the length of their telomeres, is older or younger than their actual chronological age.