The Problem of Integrating of Biological and Clinical Markers of Aging

  • Arnold MitnitskiEmail author
  • Kenneth Rockwood
Part of the Healthy Ageing and Longevity book series (HAL, volume 10)


Our goal is to address human health as a whole, with an ultimate goal of understanding how health changes with age. Here we discuss the need to integrate multidimensional information about health (and not only human) that is available in many biological and clinical databases. Reviewing several means of such integration (frailty index, dysregulation score, and some indices of biological age) we pay particular attention to the frailty index, which allows such an integration in a simple but an effective way. Most importantly, it makes it possible to apply mathematical modeling techniques and computer simulations to gain insight into the complexity of human health. By applying such modeling methodology (complex dynamical networks) we can take advantage of one of the most essential characteristics of biological systems—the interdependence of multiple biological and clinical characteristics of such systems. That also explains the effectiveness in many practical applications of using the frailty index based on the multiple clinical and biological traits instead of selecting only those that survive iterative p value testing.


Aging Complexity Biomarkers Frailty Deficits accumulation Frailty index Mortality Biological versus chronological age Complex networks 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of MedicineDalhousie UniversityHalifaxCanada

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