Jonathan Swift said, ‘Every man desires to live long, but no man wishes to be old’. Most of us have ambivalent feelings about aging. We may want a long life, but those extra years hold less appeal if we are too ill to enjoy them. At one extreme of the aging trajectory are those who become frail, immobile and dependent in their 5th or 6th decade. At the other extreme are those who live to 100 or beyond remaining cognitively intact, active and engaged in their communities. We wonder what causes underlie this diversity in the aging process? Why do some of us age well and others poorly? The immune system plays a central role in health in our later years.

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