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New iPhone App Measures Biological Age

A new app created by Hong Kong-based Deep Longevity might help you stay in your prime longer, keep your mind sharp, and maintain habits that keep your biological age lower than your chronological age.

Introducing Young.ai

It has been an increasing trend in recent years for companies to develop health and fitness apps that track a variety of health biomarkers, including heart rate, number of steps taken, calories eaten, and quality of sleep. Given how ubiquitous mobile phones are, this has fueled the popularity of easy-to-use and practical health and fitness apps.

So it was with pleasure that we found out that Deep Longevity has created Young.ai, a health app that specifically considers long-term health and aging. A wide array of metrics, including blood biomarkers, fitness wearable data, facial photographs of the user, and epigenetic clocks, are all combined with deep learning algorithms within the app to determine biological age.

You have two ages



There are two kinds of age: chronological age, which is the number on your driver’s license and is simply an indication of how much time has passed since you were born, and biological age, a measurement of how old your cells, tissues, and organs really are. The former is commonly used, but the latter can be considered your true age.

Many things influence how fast you age and thus affect your biological age, including environment, genetics, stress, lifestyle, exercise and diet. You have probably seen people who appear significantly older than their chronological ages, such as lifelong smokers who frequently look more aged than their non-smoking peers. Biological age is therefore the best measure for assessing how fast someone is aging.

The Young.ai app will be available on the Apple App Store from September 29th and will measure the user’s biological age based on the data it is given. Not only will the app predict the user’s biological age, it will also make future predictions about the rate of that person’s aging while offering personalized recommendations to help slow down or even reverse some aspects of aging.

With a host of metrics and even connectivity to your doctor, this app could set the stage for popularizing health and lifestyle changes in the context of aging. We had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Alex Zhavoronkov, who bills himself as the chief longevity officer (CLO) of Deep Longevity and is one of the minds behind the Young.ai app.

One thing that surprises me the most is that people tend to hide the fact that they are all destined to decline and die into their deep subconscious and prefer to focus on comparatively insignificant short-term issues to distract themselves from thinking about the dramatic end. We are aware of this problem and want to provide a system that would function in a similar way as the Time Machine on Macbook. At least at some levels, people may be able to “save and continue”, and we want to provide them with the ability to create a digital longitudinal twin to track in the context of their own best performance and also in the context of their peers. We also want to help them identify the “longevity bottlenecks”, the term I coined to describe the weakest organ, system, or biology that would lead to the decline and death of the rest of the organism using advanced deep generative reinforcement learning with minimal human interference to enable a maximum level of privacy.

The app can also interpret transcriptome data regarding the range of messenger RNA (mRNA) molecules present in our bodies, microbiome data, which measures the health and diversity of the populations of microbes living in our gut, and gene expression profiles and DNA methylation clocks.



There will be a paid version for the more serious self quantifiers, who will be able to measure even more metrics, and it is also designed to integrate with both the Apple Watch and Fitbit fitness trackers. There will unfortunately be no Android version of the app at launch, though we are informed that the team is working on it. It is also possible to access the app and enjoy expanded functions via a desktop PC.

For those interested in personal data and how companies use it, users will need to agree to give Deep Longevity the right to conduct anonymized research using their data as part of the terms and conditions of using the app. Dr. Alex Zhavoronkov said that the company will also comply with any laws that require additional consent from individuals to use their data for research projects.

Conclusion

Having attended the press preview of Young.ai earlier this week, we are very excited about the potential of this app, and even the standard free version includes a host of metrics and useful functions. For people serious about tracking their biological age and any changes resulting from interventions and lifestyle changes, we recommend checking out the Young.ai app when it launches on September 21.



About the author

Steve Hill

Steve serves on the LEAF Board of Directors and is the Editor in Chief, coordinating the daily news articles and social media content of the organization. He is an active journalist in the aging research and biotechnology field and has to date written over 500 articles on the topic, interviewed over 100 of the leading researchers in the field, hosted livestream events focused on aging, as well as attending various medical industry conferences. His work has been featured in H+ magazine, Psychology Today, Singularity Weblog, Standpoint Magazine, Swiss Monthly, Keep me Prime, and New Economy Magazine. Steve has a background in project management and administration which has helped him to build a united team for effective fundraising and content creation, while his additional knowledge of biology and statistical data analysis allows him to carefully assess and coordinate the scientific groups involved in the project.
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