Programmed longevity, youthspan, and juventology

Valter Longo

The identification of conserved genes and pathways that regulate lifespan but also healthspan has resulted in an improved understanding of the link between nutrients, signal transduction proteins, and aging but has also provided evidence for the exis-
tence of multiple “longevity programs,” which are selected based on the availability of nutrients.

Periodic fasting and other dietary restrictions can promote entry into a long‐lasting longevity program characterized by cellular protection and optimal func-tion but can also activate regenerative processes that lead to rejuvenation, which are independent of the aging rate preceding the restricted period.

Thus, a “juventol-ogy”‐based strategy can complement the traditional gerontology approach by focus-ing not on aging but on the longevity program affecting the life history period in which mortality is very low and organisms remain youthful, healthy, and fully func-tional.