Engineering an End to Aging

Michael Anissimov is back to writing on the topic of healthy life extension once more, and a good thing too. As more writers craft works of common sense on aging and advocacy for longevity science, it becomes easier to raise significant funding for research and development aimed at repairing the damage of aging. Raising the tide of awareness to float the boats of endeavor is a labor in and of itself - but it must happen if we are to succeed.

You'll find Anissimov's latest piece hosted at the Immortality Institute:

Age-defying creams and lotions, esoteric herbs and elixirs, botox and plastic surgery, what do they all have in common?

None of them will actually increase your lifespan. Usually, they're snake oil. At best, they improve external appearance without actually extending life. We deserve better, and we'll need it if we want to live longer than the typical four score and ten years.


Enter Dr. Aubrey de Grey, a biogerontologist from the UK, and his "strategies for engineered negligible senescence" (SENS) plan. Instead of exclusively studying the complex biochemical processes of aging in detail, as in gerontology, or ameliorating the worst symptoms of age-related decline, as in geriatrics, de Grey and his supporters advocate an "engineering approach" to aging, which asks: what are the main categories of age-related biochemical damage, and how can we fix them? The idea is not to eliminate the sources of age-related damage, but fix the damage fast enough that it doesn't accumulate to cause health problems. This is far easier than deciphering all the intricacies of the biochemistry of aging.

Go and read the whole thing. One of the pleasant aspects of this new publishing paradigm we've engineered for ourselves on the web is that there is less of a need to forge your work, complete in every aspect, prior to presenting it. One can publish early and iterate the publication often, which I think tends to lead to a better result. In that vein, Anissimov is soliciting constructive criticism for the next iteration:

Check it out, and let me know if there’s any way it might be improved or modified.

Aging sucks! Let’s end this terrible disease, and let people live as long as they desire.


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