Blood Test
© AndresrA blood test may hold the key to your longevity.
If you're curious if you'll be alive in five years — and who isn't? — a blood test may provide the answer.

A new study suggests that an inflammatory marker found in middle-aged adults may be a more reliable predictor of longevity than other previous methods. Inflammatory markers are known to be associated with cancer, chronic heart disease, strokes and other serious conditions. The greater the inflammation, the more serious the disease.

In this study, a team of researchers from France and the United Kingdom collected data between 1997 and 1999 on more than 6,500 men and women ages 45 to 69.

Scientists looked at inflammation markers including interleukin-6 (IL-6), C-reactive protein (CRP) and alpha1-acid glycoprotein (AGP).

Subjects were followed to 2015 to see if they had died. In prior research, AGP was found to be the strongest predictor of death within five years. This new research, just published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, found that IL-6 is a better predictor of dying in the short and long term. More study is needed. But the findings may be beneficial when coming up with individual health plans.

"Research on biomarkers is progressing fast, and it is important to undertake checks like in the one in our study, to shape future research on biomarkers," said Professor Archana Singh-Manoux, from University College London.