Much research concerning the aging process is being concentrated on the role which telomeres play in the ability for human cells to replace, to replicate themselves; the longer the telomere, like a microscopic shoe-lace cap on a chromosome, the more times the cell can replace itself after being damaged. When our cells no longer replace themselves, serious physical deterioration begins, the proverbial downhill slide, with death not too far down the road. Some individuals and families have longer telomeres on their chromosomes, so they are prone to live longer, and vice versa, so this is the obvious clue to how the ancients in the Bible lived so long, some having approached a thousand years of age at death, such as Adam and Noah, what was a great mystery to the ancients, now certainly understandable through today’s molecular science.
After the global flood of Noah’s time, lifespans began to decrease significantly, Noah’s sons lived to only about 600 years, with the steady decrease in longevities having continued through Abraham, who lived 175 years, from the tenth generation of Noah. Lifespans by the time of Moses, circa 1500 B.C., were pretty much as they are today, so why the decrease in longevity after the Flood? Noah’s childern were born before the Flood, but they lived significantly shorter lives than their father, apparently because most of their lives were lived after the Flood, whereas most (600 years) of Noah’s life was lived before the Deluge, so deleterious environmental factors must have been much more in play after the Flood than before, factors such as greater radioactivity, more uv radiation, bad water from mining runoff, and more serious climatic swings by the post-deluge hydrologic cycle which induced the Ice Age, by much more evaporation off the warmer post-deluge oceans to have formed the dense cloudcover for the Ice Age (it’s hydrology 101).
And as the eight deluge survivors began to immediately age faster because of those deleterious environmental factors, which damaged cells needed to be replaced through the telomere mechanism for cell replacement, their offspring, and their offspring, apparently began to lose the genetic predisposition for longer telomeres, probably because clans moved off to far flung locations by land or sea during the Ice Age, inbreeding, so to speak, in their new genetically isolated new post-deluge homelands; in other words, a genetic bottleneck occurred at the Flood, only eight survived, and some of them, no doubt, had shorter telomeres than others, passed on through the rapidly expanding populations which lost overtime the predisposition for longer telomeres by genetic drift through the global population.
It was alarming to the ancients to see grandfathers out-living their grandchildren in the early generations after the Flood, this is why those grandfathers, such as Sidon (Poseidon), Atlas (Hercules), and Japheth (Jupiter), were treated as god-like, but those men too despaired as they realized their lives would be shorter than Noah’s and those who preceded him, as Nimrod (Gilgamesh) sought the secret to long life from Noah (Utnapishtim), knowing that he would certainly soon face his creator, apparently not looking forward to it at all.