SENS Research Foundation Newsletter for April 2015

The SENS Research Foundation's April newsletter turned up in my inbox today, along with the news that registration is open for the Rejuvenation Biotechnology 2015 conference to be held later this year in San Francisco, California. This conference series aims to lay the groundwork for closer collaboration between academia and industry in the forthcoming development and commercialization of the first generation of effective treatments for aging. The first conference in the series was held last year and well-received by all accounts; there are a number of very interesting presentation videos to be found online.

Registration NOW OPEN for the 2015 Rejuvenation Biotechnology Conference

SENS Research Foundation is pleased to announce that registration is now open for the 2015 Rejuvenation Biotechnology Conference. For the second year in a row, the Rejuvenation Biotechnology Conference will convene the foremost leaders from academia, industry, investment, policy, and disease advocacy to share knowledge, strategize, and explore the potential for a truly effective approach to managing all age-related disease.

The Rejuvenation Biotechnology Conference Poster Session is now open for abstract submissions. Participants will present their work during two evening poster sessions at the conference. Abstracts are due June 1st. Primary authors of accepted abstracts will be notified on July 1, 2015.

SRF Education: 2015 Summer Scholars Class Selected

SENS Research Foundation is pleased to announce the completion of our evaluation process of an outstanding group of applicants for the 2015 SRF Summer Scholars Program. Sixteen students have been selected to conduct research at eight institutions. Prior host institutions (the Buck Institute for Research on Aging, the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, the University of Oxford, the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine and the SRF Research Center) will be joined this year by new host partners Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, the Scripps Research Institute, and Stanford University.

Thank You to our Amazon Smile Users

Everyone at SENS Research Foundation would like to thank our supporters who have made us the recipient of their AmazonSmile donations. We just received a check for $972.82 from the AmazonSmile Foundation based on your purchases from October 1 - December 31st. If you'd like to take this opportunity to help fund our fight against age-related disease, it's not too late to join in! Just sign up, and remember to go to AmazonSmile whenever you are shopping on Amazon.

The latest question of the month is a fairly general query on progress in diagnostic technologies, and the response is a long one. You should definitely head on over and read the whole thing at the SENS Research Foundation website rather than just the preamble quoted below:

Question of the Month #9: What is the role of novel diagnostics in rejuvenation biotechnologies?

Q: I'm a biotech graduate currently reading up to produce a PhD proposal. My main areas of interest are in diagnostics, and after reading about rejuvenation biotechnology I've become very interested in contributing to regenerative medicine against ageing. Is there a crossover between diagnostics and the work under SENS Research Foundation? If so I'd love to hear about it.

A: There is definitely a need for novel diagnostics, particularly in the course of the critical three decades ahead, as the first rejuvenation biotechnologies enter into human clinical use.

As you probably know, rejuvenation biotechnologies are therapies that prevent, arrest, and potentially reverse age-related disease and dysfunction using a "damage-repair" approach. Such therapies work by directly removing, repairing, replacing, or rendering harmless the cellular and molecular damage wrought in our tissues by the biological aging process. This contrasts rejuvenation biotechnology with today's medical approach, in which the target is the metabolic pathways that contribute to such damage instead of the damage itself. Current medicines are thus typically first tested for their effects on the metabolic "risk factors" that ultimately contribute to diseases of aging.

Rejuvenation biotechnologies, by contrast, will not directly perturb these metabolic processes (although in some cases they may maintain or restore metabolic processes in youthful condition, when aging normally leads to their dysfunction). Effects on these "risk factors" will therefore either be nonexistent, or manifest themselves many years later, when recipients continue to exhibit youthful metabolic function, in contrast to the age-related aberrations that emerge in untreated aging persons.

All this means that new ways of evaluating these novel medicines will be needed - first for their initial preclinical and clinical development, and later for their clinical use. Instead of reflecting dynamic, regulated physiological and metabolic processes, diagnostics that will facilitate the development and use of rejuvenation biotechnology will be noninvasive markers of the presence, removal, or repair of the cellular and molecular damage that accumulates in aging tissues.

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