Our community year end fundraiser for 2018 will soon be underway to support scientific programs for the development of rejuvenation therapies carried out at the non-profit SENS Research Foundation. As was the case last year, once again Fight Aging! and a few fellow travelers will assemble a challenge fund to encourage new SENS Patrons to set up subscriptions to make monthly or yearly recurring donations to the SENS Research Foundation. The first year of any such new donations will be matched dollar for dollar from the challenge fund.
We think that recurring donations are important: the more that our community supports the SENS programs by providing a regular supply of funding, the easier it becomes for the SENS Research Foundation staff to plan ahead and commit to long-term projects. In past years this initiative has been a success: our matching fund was met last year, and the new monthly donors largely stick around for the long term to continue to support SENS rejuvenation research. This year regular donor Josh Triplett is going above and beyond to put up $36,000 to encourage new SENS Patrons to make the leap. Christophe and Dominique Cornuejols are contributing $12,000, and I myself will put in $6,000. We are looking for other challenge fund donors to join us in this initiative. Do you want to make a sizable difference to the future of human health and longevity? This is how it is done.
The SENS Research Foundation uses our donations to fund a range of scientific work on the foundations of rejuvenation therapies, focused on those areas that are furthest behind or that most need unblocking in order to achieve meaningful progress. These are all programs that achieve rejuvenation through repair: validating the list of cell and tissue damage that lies at the roots of aging, and then reversing these forms of damage, one by one. It is in large part thanks to the advocacy, networking, and funding provided by the SENS Research Foundation, and by the Methuselah Foundation before it, that rejuvenation research is as far ahead as it is. When the SENS programs started, popular culture and the scientific community were opposed to any initiative aiming to produce rejuvenation via targeting the molecular damage that causes aging, despite decades of evidence to strongly support this strategy.
In recent years the naysayers have been proven clearly and categorically wrong. Clearance of senescent cells through the use of senolytic therapies has been shown to produce rejuvenation in mice. The first such treatments are in human trials, in development by multiple biotech companies, and being used by a growing number of self-experimenters worldwide. That today there is a new and rapidly growing senolytics industry, poised to deploy rejuvenation therapies that can remove some of the burden of senescent cells in older individuals, is due in large part to the network of advocacy, science, and funding centered on the SENS Research Foundation and Methuselah Foundation. Clearance of senescence cells was in the SENS proposals, front and center, from the very start. Back then, at the turn of the century, the goal of rejuvenation was widely ridiculed. Nonetheless, with persistence, persuasion, and the support of our community of everyday philanthropists, here we are today, embarking upon the construction of an industry that aims to reverse aging.
Senolytics are just the start. They are only a part of the story, and only a narrow slice of the complete human rejuvenation that remains only a possibility, rather than a certainty. Scores of other equally important and beneficial projects under the SENS umbrella of repair therapies are still comparatively neglected, or blocked by the lack of tools, or blocked by the lack of funding, or lacking strong champions in the research community. We can help to change this. We did a great deal to make that change come about for senescent cell clearance, and we can do the same for mitochondrial DNA repair, for breaking the cross-links that stiffen tissues, for clearing amyloids and other harmful metabolic wastes, and more. We shine the light that shows the way, and, given time and resources, we are successful.
Give some thought to joining us. A future in which being old does not mean being sick and diminished is a future worth bringing into existence. We can all help in some way to make this vision a reality.