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Journal of Aging Research
Volume 2011, Article ID 153756, 10 pages
Research Article

A Population Where Men Live As Long As Women: Villagrande Strisaili, Sardinia

1FNRS, IACCHOS, Université Catholique de Louvain, 6000 Charleroi, Belgium
2Institute for Population Studies, Tallinn University, 10504 Tallinn, Estonia
3Dipartimento di Scienze Biomediche, Università degli Studi di Sassari, 07100 Sassari, Italy
4Dipartimento di Ricerche Economiche e Sociali, Università degli Studi di Cagliari, 09123 Cagliari, Italy

Received 15 February 2011; Revised 11 May 2011; Accepted 9 June 2011

Academic Editor: Bo A. Hagberg

Copyright © 2011 Michel Poulain et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Usually women live longer than men and female centenarians largely outnumber male centenarians. The findings of previous studies identifying a population with a femininity ratio close to 1.0 among centenarians in the mountainous region of Sardinia was the starting point of an in-depth investigation in order to compare mortality trajectories between men and women in that population. The exceptional survival of men compared to women emerges from the comparison with similar Italian data. Age exaggeration for men has been strictly excluded as a result of the age validation procedure. The discussion suggests that besides biological/genetic factors, the behavioral factors including life style, demographic behavior, family support, and community characteristics may play an important role. No single explanation is likely to account for such an exceptional situation and a fully integrated multidisciplinary approach is urgently needed.