On the topic of whether we could conceivably understand death and extend human lifespans significantly - I'm wondering if any smart folks can point me to where my thinking regarding death may be wonky.
Hypothesis: Death only exists as an evolutionary advantage, and decoding the genome would point to designed cell death
Offspring provide a chance for mutations and evolution. Bacteria, with their short doubling time, can evolve very quickly (e.g. antibiotic resistance). Humans, with a longer lifespan, cannot evolve as quickly. While the exact metric above is not linked to lifespan directly (its actually reproductive rate), I'd argue that at stable/equilibrium population size (due to resource constraints) they are indirectly correlated.
Understandably, there are many factors that introduce mutation into a species, other than death rate. Some species may have more powerful DNA editing enzyme variants that lower mutation rates.
Some counter arguments may include 'wear and tear', the notion that no organism can live forever as any ordered matter tends to break down over time. Some cold-water fish have low metabolism rates and long lifespans.
What can I learn about this topic?