Two separate projects are both analyzing the genes of healthy, old (90 or even 100 years) people to see if they have genes in common that may be responsible for enabling their longevity.
Technology Review reports that Eric Topol leads the Genomic Medicine Program at the Scripps Translational Science Institute that is collecting blood samples from 1,000 people age 80 or older who have never suffered any serious illnesses and do not take medication. From the article:
“These people have genetic susceptibility markers for many serious diseases, including cardiovascular disease, stroke, and diabetes, but they don’t get any of these diseases,” says Eric Topol'”
“Sequencing allows researchers to determine if healthy older people are more likely to carry [genetic] variations that either make protective factors function more efficiently or hinder the activity of harmful factors.”
From this same report we also learn of the Longevity Genes Project which is also searching for longevity genes, but they are using microarray analysis instead of direct gene sequencing.