Judging by the annual growth rings on the clam's shell, Ming was believed to be in the region of 405-410 years old when the clam was caught off the coast of Iceland in October 2007. The claim was made by researchers at Bangor University. The researchers are uncertain how long the clam, which died during the assessment process, might have lived had it been left on the ocean floor. The clam was named after the Ming Dynasty due to its age.
Scientists are hoping the discovery of Ming will help aid in researching the aging process, and how some animals 'escape' old age.