Scientists have found a new way to predict the exact age of, for instance, a suspect in any crime investigation using just a saliva sample.
Online edition of the Public Library of Science (PLoS) published these findings according to which DNA tests will involve the testing of saliva sample through a special chemical process known as methylation in which the genomes will be tested.
Dr. Eric Vilain, professor of genetics, pediatrics and urology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA said:
Our approach supplies one answer to the enduring quest for reliable markers of aging. With just a saliva sample, we can accurately predict a person’s age without knowing anything else about them.
Our research will help to solve the everlasting problem of correct evaluation of suspects age and it will help in investigation processes
UCLA did a research some time ago in which the saliva samples of 34 pairs of men aging from 21 to 55 were taken, and the result depicted a massive relation of methylation with the correct evaluation of age. A great level of accuracy is achieved as the results predicted the age exact up to 5 years using methylation and genomes links to each other.
While genes partly shape how our body ages, environmental influences also can change our DNA as we age. Methylation patterns shift as we grow older and contribute to aging-related disease.
Methylation’s relationship with age is so strong that we can identify how old someone is by examining just two of the 3 billion building blocks that make up our genome.
Saliva samples can be recovered from any tooth bite, cup, brush present at the crime scene and these tests can be used as effective forensic tool for the arrests of the guilty.
This research has got many other uses as bio-age of an individual can be reflected from saliva samples and future diseases that a person might have can be predicted and can be avoided before they actually happen by proper treatment.
Doctors could predict your medical risk for a particular disease and customize treatment based on your DNA’s true biological age, as opposed to how old you are. By eliminating costly and unnecessary tests, we could target those patients who really need them.