Besides attending to early stages in the life course, late stages might also receive some attention. Minority older adults who are exceptionally healthy might provide clues to appropriate behavior modification strategies to decrease mortality and morbidity across the lifespan. The Macarthur Successful Aging Cohort study covers whites and some blacks, but the superior health status of other racial and ethnic minorities, despite poorer socioeconomic status, suggests that they should be included in studies.

Whether implementing cohort studies or other approaches, social scientists and epidemiologists need to pay more attention to and collaborate more closely with those carrying out studies with animal models to learn about the plausible operation, boundaries, and reach of biological effects. Some of the most important work on the effects of early experiences on adult health status has been inspired by studies with monkeys and rats. Similarly, a remarkable number of studies relating early deprivation to physiological imprinting are based on animal models (Barker, 1998).



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