As a companion piece to my opinions on Genescient from a year and a half ago, you might look at a recent h+ Magazine article in which one of the company VPs provides an overview of their present work:
In this article, I describe our efforts at Genescient LLC in Irvine, CA to develop strategies to delay aging and age-related disease. Genescient's primary business focus is on the development of pharmaceuticals for age-related diseases, but in conjunction with its spinoff firm Life Code LLC, it has provided testing services for the development of nutraceuticals based on its unique genomics platform. Our findings can be summarized as follows:
Aging is linked to altered expression in more than a hundred genes;
We employed artificial intelligence algorithms combined with animal longevity assays to screen for wide-spectrum herbal extracts that extend lifespan;
We succeeded in doubling [fruit fly] lifespan using a novel class of nutrigenomic supplements that modulate genes involved in both aging and age-related disease.
It's an interesting piece. My take on Genescient remains much the same: their work is a very efficient next generation approach to what is a comparatively ineffective course of action in regards to aging. In this it epitomizes the mainstream of aging and longevity research - the development of ever more sophisticated methodologies aimed at slowing down the aging process through manipulation of metabolism. Sadly, however, any foreseeable method of slowing aging will be of little use to people who are already old ... and none of us are getting any younger as we wait on progress in research and development.
Genescient generates a raft of genetic and other information that will be useful throughout the life science field - including aging research - regardless of the outcome of their other work. The company will also make the founders a large pot of money if there's any justice in the world, given that they are effectively a next generation Sirtris. But none of this changes the fact that, from the perspective of progress towards extending human life, all that investment would be far better spent on SENS.
I say that because what we want to see are the biotechnologies of rejuvenation, not mere slowing of aging. Given that aging is an accumulation of biological damage, it seems clear that the future of human longevity will be overwhelmingly determined by methods of biological repair, not by methods of modestly slowing down the pace of damage. Any working repair methodology will produce a degree of rejuvenation, and it can be used over and again as the damage slowly returns - unlike a change in metabolism, which has a limited benefit and cannot turn back the clock.
If the longevity research community continues to spend the present majority of its time on ways to slow aging, then we're all going to age to death with very few additional years to show for that research investment. It's that simple.