Steve Horvath

Steve Horvath is a UCLA professor known for developing the Horvath aging clock, which is a highly accurate molecular biomarker of aging, and for developing weighted correlation network analysis. The recipient of several research awards, including an Allen Distinguished Investigator award, he has studied genomic biomarkers of aging, the aging process, and many age related diseases/conditions.

His discovery, known as the Horvath clock, was unexpected because cell types differ in terms of the their DNA methylation patterns and age related DNA methylation changes tend to be tissue specific. In his article, he demonstrated that estimated age, also referred to as DNA methylation age, has the following properties: it is close to zero for embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells, it correlates with cell passage number; it gives rise to a highly heritable measure of age acceleration; and it is applicable to chimpanzees. Since the Horvath clock allows one to contrast the ages of different tissues from the same individuals, it can be used to identify tissues that show evidence of increased or decreased age.