The Comparative Studies of Aging Have Established a Negative Correlation between Gompertz Postnatal Growth Constant and Maximum Lifespan Across Mammalian Species, But the Underlying Physiological Mechanism Remains Unclear. This Study Shows that the Gompertz Growth Constant Can Be Decomposed into Two Energetic Components, Mass-Specific Metabolic Rate and the Energetic Cost of Biosynthesis, and that after Controlling the Former as a Confounder, the Negative Correlation between Growth Constant and Lifespan Still Exists Due to a 100-Fold Variation in the Latter, Revealing that the Energetic Cost of Biosynthesis is a Link between Growth and Longevity in Mammals. Previously, the Energetic Cost of Biosynthesis Has Been Thought to Be a Constant Across Species and Therefore Was Not Considered a Contributor to the Variation in Any Life History Traits, Such as Growth and Lifespan. This Study Employs a Recently Proposed Model based on Energy Conservation to Explain the Physiological Effect of the Variation in This Energetic Cost on the Aging Process and Illustrates its Role in Linking Growth and Lifespan. the Conventional Life History Theory Suggested a Tradeoff between Growth and Somatic Maintenance, But the Findings in This Study Suggest that Allocating More Energy to Biosynthesis May Enhance the Somatic Maintenance and Extend Lifespan And, Hence, Reveal a More Complex Nature of the Tradeoff.


Biological Sciences

Publication Status

Full Access

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

1091-6490; 0027-8424

Document Type

Article - Journal

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© 2024 National Academy of Sciences, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

14 May 2024

PubMed ID


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Biology Commons