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Exp Gerontol. 1988;23(4-5):429-34.

Key questions in developing biomarkers of aging.

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  • 1Molecular Physiology and Genetics Section, National Institute on Aging, Baltimore, Maryland 21224.


A series of questions is presented regarding a logical strategy for developing biomarkers of aging. The questions pertain to the conceptualization process in determining how to define aging and what extraneous and possibly confounding variables must be controlled in measuring this epiphenomenon. In addition, the investigator must consider the degree of generalization that is intended to apply to a candidate biomarker of aging. Empirical questions are also to be considered. Specifically, how will reliability and validity of the candidate biomarker be quantified and assessed? What statistical methods will be applied in this process? The need for biomarkers of aging as research tools in gerontology is argued, but the greater need for agreement on how to direct the conceptualization of this effort is also emphasized.

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