Biology of Frailty
With the aging of the population, frailty has become a critically important area of research. Despite this, there is no universally accepted definition of frailty. Frailty is often considered to be an age-associated decline in functional reserve across numerous physiologic systems, which results in an increased vulnerability to external stressors. Thus, frail older individuals can experience adverse outcomes, including death, in response to even minor stressors. Investigation of the molecular and cellular factors that give rise to frailty, known as the “biology of frailty,” is an emerging field. At present the underlying biology of frailty, and the overlap or distinction from the biology of aging itself, is not well understood.
The study of the biology of frailty has been facilitated by the development of various instruments that can be used to quantify the level of frailty in an individual. The frailty phenotype and frailty indexare two different tools that are...
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