Sex Chromosomes Hold the Secret to Female Longevity
Around the world, women outlive men. This is true in sickness and in health, in war and in peace, even during severe epidemics and famine. In most animal species, females live longer than males. Now, scientists at UC San Francisco have zeroed in on a possible genetic mechanism for this highly durable phenomenon, that – while it does not preclude the influence of other biological, social and environmental factors – suggests an important role for the second X chromosome, which is present in female mammals. The X chromosome contains many genes related to the brain, and it is crucial for survival.