MPIDR Working Paper

On engineering reliability concepts and biological aging

Finkelstein, M. S.
MPIDR Working Paper WP-2006-021, 19 pages.
Rostock, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (August 2006)
Open Access


Some stochastic approaches to biological aging modeling are studied. We assume that an organism acquires a random resource at birth. Death occurs when the accumulated dam-age (wear) exceeds this initial value, modeled by the discrete or continuous random vari-ables. Another source of death of an organism is also taken into account, when it occurs as a consequence of a shock or of a demand for energy, which is a generalization of the Strehler-Mildwan’s model (1960). Biological age based on the observed degradation is also defined. Finally, aging properties of repairable systems are discussed. We show that even in the case of imperfect repair, which is certainly the case for organisms, aging slows down with age and eventually can even fade out. This presents another possible explanation for the human mortality rate plateaus.
Keywords: mortality
The Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) in Rostock is one of the leading demographic research centers in the world. It's part of the Max Planck Society, the internationally renowned German research society.