This sort of notice should be expected given that the leadership at Google's Calico venture shows all the signs of intending to set up a very broad research infrastructure for the development of drugs to modestly slow aging. Sooner or later they are going to partner with all of the major laboratories and research groups in the field that share the same interests. This latest news is missing any interesting details on which technologies they might be interested in, but that is par for the course. I point it out to play the connections game in this small research community, noting that the SENS Research Foundation also partners with the Buck Institute on, for example, senescent cell clearance research. Near everything else the Institute does is of little relevance to the SENS approach to development of rejuvenation biotechnology, however - it is more in line with the mainstream approach of manipulation of the operation of metabolism so as to slow aging. This is slowing the accumulation of damage, not trying to repair that damage, and will probably be more challenging and produce far less impressive results.
The future for SENS-like rejuvenation therapies such as senescent cell clearance is to step by step take over the mainstream by consistently producing much better results at much lower costs at each stage of the early development process. So far this is the way things are going for senescent cell clearance, but there are a lot of other technologies making up the rejuvenation toolkit of the future that remain far from that stage of progress.
The Buck Institute for Research on Aging in Novato announced Tuesday that it has entered into a partnership agreement with Calico Life Sciences, a Google-backed life extension company based in South San Francisco. Chris Stewart, chairman and CEO of the North Bay Life Science Alliance, an effort to develop the North Bay into an economic hub for life-science companies, said, "We're very excited. You're seeing for the first time a significant amount of private sector money going into research on aging. I think it is a good marriage between the two organizations."
In September 2014, Calico announced it had entered into a five-year joint venture with AbbVie, a Chicago-based pharmaceutical company, to develop treatments for cancer and Alzheimer's. Both Calico and AbbVie committed to investing $250 million initially with the option to each add another $500 million at an unspecified later date. Since then, Calico has entered into partnership agreements with five different research laboratories, including the Buck Institute, but it has kept the financial terms of those agreements and most other details secret. Stewart said more and more pharmaceutical companies are "outsourcing their research and development by going to universities or institutes like the Buck Institute and partnering with them. Rather than buying companies, Calico is doing some strategic partnerships."
Announcing the deal with the Buck Institute, Calico's president of research and development, Hal Barron, said in a press release, "Given the Buck's exclusive focus on aging, we believe that there's great potential to increase our understanding of the biology of aging and to accelerate the translation of emerging insights into therapies to help patients with age-related diseases." Aside from that, Calico declined all comment. The only details supplied in the press release were that Calico will have the option to obtain exclusive rights to discoveries made under research it supports at the Buck Institute and will establish and maintain "certain" science operations there. One possible reason for Calico's reticence is that it hasn't decided on what areas of age-related illness it wants to focus, and it doesn't want to tip its hand to competitors.