The latest Lifespan.io crowdfunding project launched last month and is already closing in on the final stretch goal of $75,000; congratulations to everyone involved. The funds will be used to run a mouse study of nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) supplementation, one of a number of similar approaches that can increase NAD+ levels in older animals. This in turn improves mitochondrial function, though without addressing any of the underlying causes of mitochondrial decline with aging - it is a way to narrowly compensate for some of the metabolic consequences of aging, or to selectively override some of the reactions to the biochemical damage of aging. It isn't repair, but it clearly produces some benefits. A study of increased NAD+ levels using the alternative approach of nicotinamide riboside supplementation in older humans showed a reduction in blood pressure, most likely by improving the performance of smooth muscle cells in blood vessel walls. The metrics taken over the course of this Lifespan.io funded mouse study will allow researchers to assess the degree to which the NMN intervention can slow aging in mice.
Yesterday, we announced the successful completion of the NAD+ Mouse Project after a great fundraiser, but it seems we are not done yet. The research team at Harvard has announced a new stretch goal for the last two days of the campaign. A new $75,000 goal is to be the final step, and to support that, Dr. David Sinclair is offering to fund match the next $5000 in donations to the project to help it reach this final goal. So, for the next two days, all donations are worth double.
In our project, we will test the hypothesis that by restoring bioavailable NAD+ we can reverse aspects of the aging process. Starting with mice that are 20 months old (roughly equivalent to a 50 year old human), longer-term NMN treatments will be applied in order to restore levels of cellular NAD+ to those found in youthful mice. Your donations will not only allow us to purchase the materials necessary to perform this experiment, but also pave the way for human clinical trials aimed at showing, for the first time, that we can actually slow down human aging.
The final stretch goal will be to add even more comprehensive testing, such as end-of-life pathology (frequency and specificity of neoplasms/tumors/cancer) and MRI diagnostics (body composition, lean-to-fat ratio). This would really allow the researchers to maximize the useful data they collect during the study and help assess any changes to cancer risk, why each animal died, and what age-related diseases were affected by the drug.