Rapid progress towards therapies for aging, capable of increasing the healthy human life span and preventing or reversing age-related disease, is made possible by an environment of widespread appreciation and understanding. The future of longevity research depends upon funding and public support - but both are lacking. Despite the fact that the scientific community knows enough for work on longevity medicine to proceed, there is little funding for such research and even less discussion in the public sphere. This present poor situation must change for the better if we are to see significant progress in our lifetimes.
We cannot expect advances in medicine to emerge from nowhere: that isn't the way the world works. Progress occurs most readily in well-known and widely appreciated fields, where research results are constantly in the news, as is the case for stem cell research and tissue engineering. Fortunately there are many ways to help make longevity science look more like stem cell research in both popularity and the pace of development. It is in everyone's self-interest to help accelerate work on therapies that will remove the pain and suffering caused by aging. So take a little time to read the options here: every dollar, persuasive word, and helping hand brings the future of longer, healthier lives that much closer.
- Support the SENS Research Foundation
- Support the Methuselah Foundation
- Learn More: Read "Ending Aging"
The SENS Research Foundation encourages development of the Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence (SENS), a detailed plan for biotechnologies capable of rejuvenating the old by repairing the various forms of small-scale tissue damage that cause aging. The Foundation presently coordinates research programs in many laboratories in the US and Europe, the funding for this scientific work provided by philanthropic donations and the support of many people of lesser means - so every donation and offer of assistance helps:
SENS Research Foundation is the world's leading charity dedicated to advancing the development of rejuvenation biotechnologies for the diseases and disabilities of aging. We need to raise money to support the work of our own Research Center, as well as the extra-mural projects we sponsor in laboratories around the world - and to help train the student researchers who will go on to lead similar teams in the years to come.
We're tightly focused on getting the greatest possible value from all the donations we receive, but pioneering biomedical research is unavoidably expensive. Any contribution makes a difference to our work, which is funded entirely by the public. Please give generously to help us lead the fight against aging-related disease.
Although a donation is the most direct way to help, many of our supporters are able to contribute in other ways - whether it's by conducting research, lobbying policy makers, or simply by raising awareness that illness and disability need not be an inevitable part of growing old. You can also contribute your time and talents as a volunteer.
The Methuselah Foundation administers the New Organ Prize, aimed at speeding the development of tissue engineering technologies, and the Mprize for longevity science, a program that encourages researchers to compete in developing better biotechnologies that can extend healthy life in mammals. The Foundation also funds research and development, including the SENS programs noted above and bioprinting technologies used in tissue engineering. These efforts are made possible through donations from the public: donating to fund research and grow the prize pools to attract new competitors makes a tangible difference to the future of health and longevity.
Do you believe in the possibility of controlling aging? Do you feel that you would like to add your pebble to a growing landslide that is sure to bury an old enemy of health and life? We can always use willing and able individuals for the tremendous number of opportunities available in promoting awareness of the near term potential of longevity science.
For the price of a cup of coffee per day, would you like to join a select group of humanitarians who will be remembered for their vision and saving millions of lives? Modern medical science continues to show us that the aging process may no longer be the intractable problem it has been perceived to be for every generation preceding ours. There is a present need to move faster towards a previously unattainable goal: the control of aging. This need for more rapid medical progress is only magnified by the current profound lack of funding for aging research. Funding springs, at root, from widespread public awareness of advances and possibilities in aging research. Educating the public is an essential step in moving philanthropists and governments to allocate more resources to the study of aging. The problems caused by aging leave us poor in body, spirit, and finances. We must step forward to tackle them!
Understand more about the medical technologies that must be developed in order to repair and reverse the biological damage of aging, and you become better able to decide how to help make these future therapies a reality. Thus you should read "Ending Aging," in which biomedical gerontologist Aubrey de Grey and researcher Michael Rae explain - clearly and for the layman, as best we know based on the scientific knowledge of today - how targeted development of new biotechnologies can greatly extend the healthy human life span within our lifetimes.
Nearly all scientists who study the biology of aging agree that we will someday be able to substantially slow down the aging process, extending our productive, youthful lives. Dr. Aubrey de Grey is perhaps the most bullish of all such researchers. As has been reported in media outlets ranging from 60 Minutes to The New York Times, Dr. de Grey believes that the key biomedical technology required to eliminate aging-derived debilitation and death entirely - technology that would not only slow but periodically reverse age-related physiological decay, leaving us biologically young into an indefinite future - is now within reach.
In Ending Aging, Dr. de Grey and his research assistant Michael Rae describe the details of this biotechnology. They explain that the aging of the human body, just like the aging of man-made machines, results from an accumulation of various types of damage. As with man-made machines, this damage can periodically be repaired, leading to indefinite extension of the machine's fully functional lifetime, just as is routinely done with classic cars. We already know what types of damage accumulate in the human body, and we are moving rapidly toward the comprehensive development of technologies to remove that damage. By demystifying aging and its postponement for the nonspecialist reader, de Grey and Rae systematically dismantle the fatalist presumption that aging will forever defeat the efforts of medical science.
Last updated: August 23rd, 2014.