Could the cure for ageing be a reality?

Searching for eternal youth has long been a realm for Hollywood bad guys. Just think of Voldemort and his horcruxes, the Nazis trying to get their hands on the Holy Grail in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, or even the scary witch in Disney's 'Tangled'.

The moral of the story is invariably that no one can have everlasting youth, and only really evil people would think they can acquire it by unspeakable deeds.

Yet in a discovery worthy of an episode of "Myth Busters", science seems to have shown up Hollywood once again. There might, in fact, be a way to not just slow the ageing process, but actually reverse its effects – all without splitting your soul or kidnapping a magic-haired child.

Dr. Aubrey de Grey is world renowned for his expertise in the field of anti-ageing, and is a biomedical gerontologist who first researched and founded the SENS (Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence) Research Foundation

If Dr. de Grey's predictions are anything to go by, the first person who will live to 150 has already been born. Technically speaking, that person could be you.

If that already sounds like the plot of a Hollywood sci-fi, picture this – Dr. de Grey also suggests the first person to live to 1,000 could be born within the next couple of decades.

Future visits to the doctor could include "maintenance" sessions such as stem cell therapies, immune stimulation and gene therapies, all in the effort to avoid premature death caused by disease and illness.

While it's not made to simply increase the numbers of elderly people, the science is designed to allow humans to live a full life without the complications of molecular and cellular damage caused by ageing – a long life is in fact a side effect of better health.

What this means for superannuation funds is unclear – will it mean governments will have to raise the retirement age? Or will we all simply need to save more to enjoy our golden years that may soon last longer than ever before?