The Work of the Aoki Foundation to Support SENS Rejuvenation Research

Music business entrepreneur Steve Aoki has been a supporter of the SENS rejuvenation research programs for a while now. I'm always pleased to see successful people being vocal about their support for SENS, putting it front and center when talking to their audiences. Placing this important scientific work - as well as the prospects for near future therapies, and the need for philanthropic funding - in front of a bigger audience is vital to the continued growth of our community and progress towards the medical control of aging. We need to reach out to entirely new networks of people, those who would never seek out the longevity science community on their own, as among their numbers are many who will be turn out to be interested, pleasantly surprised, and enthusiastic. Today, I'd wager, a large fraction of those people who will go on to be significant advocates and philanthropic donors of the late 2020s have no idea that we even exist, or that bringing an end to age-related disease, frailty, and suffering is possible outside the realm of science fiction.

Bootstrapping a cause never stops being hard. It was hard when small groups were striving to raise a few thousand dollars for SENS advocacy here and there, when having regular research programs and a million dollar fund looked to be an impossible distance away. It is hard today, when the SENS Research Foundation is trying to make the leap from a few million dollars in yearly research budgets to something ten times that size. Building greater public awareness and enthusiasm for the medical science of human rejuvenation is a very necessary part of that work. The sooner we collectively manage to change the zeitgeist to one in which charitable support for rejuvenation research is just as normal and lauded as support for cancer research, the better off we all are, and the more money that can be raised for scientific projects. So thanks are due to Steve Aoki for stepping up to the plate and taking a swing at this. He is helping with the present year end SENS Research Foundation fundraiser, with the SENS rejuvenation research programs being one part of his broader interest in neuroscience as it can be applied to the long-term health of the brain:

Steve Aoki Throws a Party For Science

Hang with DJ Steve Aoki at a nightclub and you can expect an earful of his electronic bangers and confetti in your hair. Cozy up to Steve Aoki at Brooklyn Bowl on November 15 and you'll get to hit pins alongside neuroscientists, bid on one-of-a-kind experiences in live and silent auctions (think jumping into the foam pit at Aoki's Las Vegas "playhouse") and catch him outside the booth as he hosts the Aoki Foundation's Bowling for Brains fundraiser. The inaugural event supports the Buck Institute on Aging, SENS Research Foundation and Las Vegas' own Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health, continuing the foundation's ongoing support of regenerative science.

"Anyone who's willing to help out toward brain research and organizations that are focused on cutting-edge research on degenerative brain diseases - I want to meet these people. I want to be in the same room with them and create more collaborations. That's really cool to me. I don't get the opportunity to do that very often because usually when I do events, I'm just DJing. At this one, I get to hang out. It's more of an intimate thing. Anyone who enters can have conversations about brain health and what we can do to raise more money and awareness of these organizations that are doing incredible work. After my father passed away in 2008, I started doing a lot of research on cancer and understanding what killed him. That led to researching general health and nutrition and understanding the body, the brain, then science and technology, seeing how far we've advanced and what kind of trajectories we're heading toward. A lot of it has to do with understanding our brain. It's the single most important phenomenon in civilization - the human brain. Yet we really don't know much about it. At the end of the day, if we don't die from something like cancer, we will have some kind of degenerative issues that will affect us and the people that we love."

"We're going down a path that, at one point, was considered science fiction. There are a lot of things happening in science that you wouldn't even believe. These radical technological advances are something I'm excited about. You don't really hear about it because the science community is so small. In a way, I use this platform to say, hey, the science community is pretty small, but the music community is pretty large. I would love to use this platform to bounce all of these amazing advances off to a community that would never hear about it and let them know, hey, you can help out. We can get there faster, and we can get there more efficiently. We're working toward a world where degenerative brain diseases do not exist. Imagine if we could eradicate that like we eradicated tuberculosis or polio, then we wouldn't ever have to worry about it again. If we don't have a brain that's working, we're not ourselves."

Aoki Foundation

The AOKI FOUNDATION has a primary goal of supporting organizations in the brain science and research areas with a specific focus on regenerative medicine and brain preservation. Our vision is to one day see a world where degenerative brain diseases do not exist and science and technology play a direct role in extending the healthy lives of ourselves and our loved ones. Steve believes strongly that greater research in brain science can lead to healthier and longer lives. He supports various organizations in the neuroscience field, specifically focused on doing research on regenerative medicine, brain health and preservation. He hopes to use his global influence to raise money for organizations conducting research in important brain health areas. Through the AOKI FOUNDATION, he will take issues into his own hands by directly supporting those affecting change when needs arise, in addition to hosting fundraising events and campaigns for specific charitable organizations throughout the year. The human brain is the most complicated biological structure in the known universe. We've only just scratched the surface in understanding how it works and more importantly how it doesn't work when disorders and disease happen.


Woah, I had here about Steve Aoki and his support of SENS, but reading this interview he appears to have given quite a serious thought about the whole role of science and rejuvenation in 21st century's societies. He rightly understood the challenges we're facing and we should address.

Props to Steve for having taken the time to reflecting upon it and having decided to support our common cause through his influence. Being associated with SENS is still "risky" because it hasn't got mainstream acceptance to this day, yet he's happy to show his fans that it's in fact a cool cause to support.

Posted by: Spede at November 12th, 2016 8:51 AM

I have MS, so I am very interested in this research. I would gladly be a volunteer. My family and friends already know my views on this subject. So it wouldn't be a surprise for anyone. I regularly tell the children in my family to start looking at life in terms of, "what will make me happy for the next 1000 years. NOT the next 100 years." Although, I've been calling it "The Soul Transplant". Even if I died in the process, It would be good reason to die. For science.

Posted by: Dawn Brimmer at November 12th, 2016 9:37 AM

@Dawn - An area with massive promise but little funding or interest from big pharma (much like anti aging medicine) is inducing immune tolerance to cure MS.

"This approach, called antigen-specific therapy, has yet to gain traction, however. Part of the problem is that for many autoimmune conditions we simply do not know the identities of the antigens that are recognized and attacked by the immune system. Although researchers have identified the targeted molecules in a few autoimmune diseases, the pharmaceutical industry has been reluctant to invest in antigen-specific therapies. So far no one has succeeded with this approach, and such attempts are thus deemed "nonvalidated" by industry. Lack of support from the pharmaceutical industry, however, has slowed progress toward validating these targeted therapies. Antigen-specific therapy has only rarely been tested in humans, and failures of clinical trials testing antigen-specific therapies in multiple sclerosis, where we do not yet have a convincing understanding of the key antigens driving disease progression, have cast further shadows over our ability to target any autoimmune disease at its roots."

As a layperson I don't know how much it would cost to figure out the self antigens getting attacked in MS, but I imagine it would only be millions, rather than 10s or 100s of millions.

Posted by: Jim at November 12th, 2016 11:43 PM

God damn I hope Thiel can talk some sense to Trump.

Maybe he could be persuaded about the possibility of starting a crash course Rejuvenation research effort to combat the immense medical financing problem that the USA is facing. Or is this unrealistic?

How many lives could be saved if SENS typed research was given top priority?

Is someone here in a position to contact Thiel, I guess many people want his attention now that his Trump-bet came of.

Stop the researchers from being so low energy and low on ambition.

Stop the insurance disaster by kicking the FDA and allowing radical science to take place, risks be damned.

Conquering the oceans and space also cost a lot of lives. That should resonate with Trump.

Posted by: Arren Brandt at November 13th, 2016 11:48 AM

Sorry if this is a little off topic, but I was struck by a layman's thought when reading this passage on the article about AI disease and reverse vaccination:

"There have been a few trials of antigen-specific therapy in multiple sclerosis (MS). Specifically, my group and others have designed therapies to tolerize MS patients to various proteins of the myelin sheath that surrounds nerve axons in the brain and spinal cord and is attacked by the immune system. However, we simply do not know which of the dozen myelin proteins and several dozen lipids are the targets of the autoimmune affront."

If they have sequenced the human genome and know the DNA sequences for each of the "dozen myelin proteins and several dozen lipids are the targets of the autoimmune affront" why can't they just produce immuno-modulatory plasmids for the lot and inject them? Or would that increase the chances of side effects?

Posted by: Jim at November 14th, 2016 3:58 AM

Arren, I was thinking the exact same thing. Having someone like Thiel with the levers of power might actually start getting things done.

Posted by: Slicer at November 14th, 2016 9:51 AM
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