There isn't a great deal of funding for research into aging in comparison to the rest of medicine. It is greatly underfunded given its importance in biology, and this continues to be the case even after a decade or two of growing interest. Research into the manipulation of aging is a tiny field within aging research - most aging research is still a matter of gathering data. Lastly, research aimed at treating and reversing aging is a tiny fraction of work on manipulation of aging. The US National Institute on Aging has a $1 billion yearly budget, and might be a third of spending in the US on aging research; the SENS Research Foundation, which is arguably the only group managing research programs to realize plausible means of rejuvenation, has a yearly budget of $3 million.
This is what entrepreneurs, ever optimistic, call "a growth opportunity." Astronomical budgets are dedicated to medicine, merely vast budgets for amassing information about aging, and infinitesimal budgets are all that is presently available to stop the suffering, pain, death, and expense caused by aging. Rejuvenation research must grow if we are to see significant progress before we age to death.
Why is the budget for rejuvenation research tiny? My intuitive response to that is that is a combination of (a) that it has only recently become plausible to work on building therapies capable of rejuvenation, somewhere within the last 20 years, (b) few people know anything about the science that supports the plausibility of treating and reversing aging, and (c) few people care enough about living longer to do anything about it. Plus I might argue that the "anti-aging" marketplace sidetracks people into useless activities, while aggressively spreading misinformation about how we might go about extending life.
I noticed a post at Immortal Life that argues slightly differently: the root of not having enough funding is that we are failing to raise it. That we are bad at advocacy, or at least insufficient in numbers, and need to become better. It's an interesting position: are we terrible advocates by virtue of not having achieved the sweeping gains that, say, the AIDS advocacy community managed in a few short years in the 1980s? Or are we acceptably good at what we do but still early in the game - where the trajectory is more like that of the decades preceding the establishment of today's massive cancer research establishment?
When asked what the biggest bottleneck for Radical or Indefinite Longevity is, most thinkers say funding. Some say the biggest bottleneck is breakthroughs and others say it's our way of approaching the problem (i.e. seeking healthy life extension as opposed to more comprehensive methods of indefinite life-extension), but the majority seem to feel that what is really needed is adequate funding to plug away at developing and experimentally-verifying the various, sometimes mutually-exclusive technologies and methodologies that have already been proposed. I claim that Radical Longevity's biggest bottleneck is not funding, but advocacy.
This is because the final objective of increased funding for Radical Longevity and Life Extension research can be more effectively and efficiently achieved through public advocacy for Radical Life Extension than it can by direct funding or direct research, per unit of time or effort. Research and development obviously still need to be done, but an increase in researchers needs an increase in funding, and an increase in funding needs an increase in the public perception of RLE's feasibility and desirability.
There is no definitive timespan that it will take to achieve indefinitely-extended life. How long it takes to achieve Radical Longevity is determined by how hard we work at it and how much effort we put into it. More effort means that it will be achieved sooner. And by and large, an increase in effort can be best achieved by an increase in funding, and an increase in funding can be best achieved by an increase in public advocacy. You will likely accelerate the development of Indefinitely-Extended Life, per unit of time or effort, by advocating the desirability, ethicacy and technical feasibility of longer life than you will by doing direct research, or by working towards the objective of directly contributing funds to RLE projects and research initiatives.
I'd qualify that last point by suggesting that an hour of advocacy is only better than giving an hour of your wages to the SENS Research Foundation if that hour of advocacy actually results in more money showing up for SENS projects. I believe I'm still ahead of the game by that measure, but I'm nowhere near as certain of that as I'd like to be. It really does all come down to money at this precise point in time, now that there exists an established rejuvenation research program that can soak up many more millions of dollars with ease. With enough money the next five to ten years will produce such amazing results in the laboratory that using research to generate publicity looks like a better option than using publicity to generate funds for research.
But of course no-one is going to turn down publicity-generated funds should someone figure out how to make that work well in the intervening time. Over the long haul, it is the case that publicity and science have to move together, it's just here and now that resources for research look to have a better value than resources for publicity.
As an aside, and while we're on the subject of money, Immortal Life appears to be run by the same folk who managed Transhumanity.net before it was transferred to the Zero State initiative. The site as a whole illustrates why it's hard to build a for-profit single topic site for radical life extension: there is no technology available today that can achieve that goal, so the only legitimate flow of money is towards research. Everyone in the interested marketplaces that might pay the site owner to run ads or ads-disguised-as-content are in the business of selling dreams, lies, and other things that don't really matter. So if you focus on money, you end up slipping away from the ongoing research that matters and towards supplement pills and other dead ends. This, at least, has been the historical and ongoing outcome of these efforts - but that doesn't mean that it always must be. There are, after all, reputable general interest futurist sites, so you'd think there are some methodologies that might work without having to become a shill for the "anti-aging" market and supplement sellers. I'm just appropriately skeptical, given the past.