Before the Apocalypse War, human invented several medical treatments to control the aging process. Most of these were targeted at specific elements of the aging process, so that several different treatments were required in combination to be fully effective.
The most advanced of these regimens was UAG-7 (Universal AnaGathic). This is popularly imagined, and depicted in fiction, as a single drug, but it was actually a regimen of treatments. The final treatment introduced active nanomachines into the body; these would remain in circulation indefinitely and remove plaque deposts, repair molecular damage, and generally keep things “cleaned up” on an ongoing basis. It also supplemented the immune system to some extent, though was unpredictable in whether it would prove effective against any given pathogen.
UAG-7 does have a few minor shortcomings. It does not cause regeneration of teeth, which will eventually become worn down and need to be replaced with implants, or be regenerated using other methods. It does not cause females to continue producing eggs, which means it does not reverse menopause or restore fertility. It does allow many injuries to heal without scarring, but cannot regenerate lost body parts. UAG-8 was intended to address many of these problems, but the war interrupted that research.
UAG-7 was not originally designed to be applied to recoms, although the principles of its operation should be the same for them.
UAG-7 was never introduced on a wide scale to the population. It was controversial due to the fear that it would lead to further overpopulation of Earth, and it was only made available to elites – and later, to persons deemed essential to the war effort. A special version called UAG-7A1 was developed to convey increased resistance against bio-warfare agents.
Since the war, recom scientists have continued some anti-aging research, primarily working on treatments to keep recoms healthy into their old age rather than extend their life span, as such. This work has been complicated by the tangle of incompatible genetic sources that different recom lines were originally made from.
In addition, pre-war culture developed the technology of cryonics. This allows a body to be frozen in liquid nitrogen, stored for an indefinite time, and then revived. In the most advanced implementations even a frozen head could be revived, with a new body synthesized by cloning and nano-fabrication to match it.
Revival of any cryonically suspended persons requires the most advanced forms of nanotechnology. Most of this technology was lost during the war, and so cryonic suspension – or at least, revival – has become generally unavailable. Although some use of nanotechnology is allowed for medical purposes, this does not extended to reviving frozen “corpsicles”. It is possible that some governments, university research centers and large corporations have laboratory facilities capable of carrying out the procedure if it were deemed high enough priority, however.
There is also a cultural taboo that has developed against anagathic treatments and cryonic suspension. Individuals who try to live beyond their natural life span – usually defined as 100 Earth years – are deemed “chronovores”. They are considered selfish for trying to “steal the future” from younger generations. The anti-chronovore movement existed on Earth prior to the war, but came into full force during the post-war era when recom civilization was confined to limited habitats on Luna, Mars and the asteroid belt. During this time food and living space were at a premium, and population growth had to be strictly controlled. Anti-chronovore laws were passed and strongly enforced. Persons who lived beyond their 100th birthday were expected to submit to euthanasia. Those who attempted to evade this fate were were hunted by a specialized class of law enforcement, called “sandmen”.
Since the colonization of Oceania and Annyrion, the taboo against chronovores began to break down. Annyrion in particular was (and still is) chronically under-populated, with the government encouraging its people to have as many children as they can, and struggling to fill the remaining manpower gap using robotics.
Anti-chronovore laws remain on the books throughout Sol System, but enforcement is nonexistent in modern times, the laws rendered obsolete by newer laws and civil rights guarantees. The laws were never imported to Oceania, the Annyrion Coalition, or other colonies. In the settlement of Lopanga, even the taboos were left behind, as a fair number of the cultural elites in Epiphyte are wealthy chronovores.