The Methuselah Foundation has unveiled the Methuselah 300 monument in the US Virgin Islands, a lasting record of the generous donors of the Methuselah 300 who have helped fund the work of the Methuselah Foundation over the past decade: the M Prize for longevity science; the seed funding of bioprinting company Organovo; the SENS rejuvenation research programs and creation of the SENS Research Foundation; the launch of the New Organ prize series; and much more.
The Methuselah Foundation was the first longevity science initiative that I chose to materially support with my donations and my time. The third post I wrote here at Fight Aging! back in 2004 covers the just-getting-started initiative of the Methuselah 300: aiming to find a group of regular donors to contribute to bold initiatives in aging research. It was an ambitious plan at a time when raising funding to accelerate progress towards rejuvenation therapies was near unheard of, mocked by the press and the scientific establishment where it did happen, and all in all considerably harder than it is today. But why is it now easier to raise funds for rejuvenation research, and why is it now the case that up and coming scientists can talk seriously about treating aging without risking reputation and career? In large part because the Methuselah 300 worked, people joined in to a degree not seen in earlier initiatives with similar aims, the Methuselah Foundation became a going and influential concern within the small aging research community atop the foundation provided by 300 member donations, and the staff and allies of the Methuselah Foundation went on to change the culture of that community, spinning off the SENS Research Foundation along the way, having a hand behind the scenes in many important activities and decisions.
This is something like the eleven thousandth post at Fight Aging!, and a decade has passed since the first member of the Methuselah 300 sent in the first donation to help fund the then small M Prize for longevity science. The reasons for joining the 300 are just the same as they were back then, with the additional guarantee that now it isn't a step into the unknown. You might read Michael Rae's call to action from that time, for example. Joining the Methuselah 300 is a way to make a real difference to the future of health and aging, to materially support an organization with a proven track record of getting things done in longevity science. Just this year, for example, the Methuselah Foundation joined with the SENS Research Foundation in providing seed funding to Oisin Biotech, a startup company aiming to build a viable senescent cell clearance therapy, a technology we hope to see reach the clinic in the near future, the first true rejuvenation therapy capable of removing some of the damage that causes aging and age-related disease.
In 2005, The Methuselah 300 initiative began with a few brave and dedicated people willing to fight for life itself. These individuals are now honored by a monument in St. Thomas. Their story is presented by the founders of the Methuselah Foundation in the following video. In it, we pay tribute to their continued courage and generosity, which fuels the real hope for extended healthy human life.
Will you join the legacy?
In 2003, the Methuselah Foundation was formed to take action on a remarkable idea: that the world's greatest scientific and medical minds, given the right spark of innovation, could bring about sweeping changes in the longevity and quality of life for people everywhere. Exciting and innovative ideas find like minds, and the Methuselah Foundation moved quickly to encourage innovative creativity in the fields of medical and longevity research. With the establishment of the first "M Prize", scientific researchers saw this prize as an opportunity to be rewarded for results rather than just research itself, and teams of scientists and doctors began to get on board.
None of this was accomplished alone. Integral to the Methuselah Foundation and it's work are the men and women who early on saw the amazing possibilities the foundation's work could accomplish. These men and women were the foundation of a collective group that came to be known as the 300. Since 2005, 150 dedicated men and women have committed to giving $25,000 over 25 years to help us eradicate needless suffering and extend healthy human life. In the over 10 years since the foundation was formed with the help of these ones, research has reached the point that things once considered impossible are now on the horizon; advances like bio-printing organic material, and the organic generation of new organs.
In the foundation's desire to thank the selfless compassion and generosity of this group who continues to make these things possible, we are pleased to announce the official unveiling of the Methuselah 300 Monument! Just as the original 300 Spartans were later memorialized in a monument at Thermopylae, we have memorialized our own 300 with a unique monument located on a breathtaking hillside in St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The monument total size including surround is 9 feet wide x 17 feet long, and the granite plaques are 4 feet wide by 10 feet long. This monument will draw attention to those who generously give so that other's lives may be extended, or have their quality of life raised by the research the Methuselah foundation continues to inspire and encourage. The monument will be available for all to see by webcam at anytime; seeing not only the names already inscribed, but also the names of future 300 members to be added.
We would also like to extend the invitation for you to become a member of the 300, or support the foundation's work to whatever extent you are able. We will continue working to accomplish our goal of "making 90 the new 50 by 2030"! Will you join us?