Rejuvenation Research, High Impact Factor Journal

Rejuvenation Research is the well-regarded, high impact factor scientific journal edited by Methuselah Foundation chairman Aubrey de Grey.

The 2005 impact factors were announced yesterday, including the inaugural impact factor for Rejuvenation Research. I’m pleased to tell you that we obtained the very agreeable ranking of 8.571. This puts us at No. 1 in the “Gerontology and Geriatrics” category by a large margin, even including Aging Cell at 6.013 (which, for whatever reason, is not listed in that category). For a wider comparison, we would be No. 20 in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and No. 17 in Cell Biology, ahead of such prominent titles as Human Mol Genet, NAR, FASEB J, MCB, MBC, JCS, and Oncogene.

A sea change in the culture of aging and longevity research is upon us, driven by advocacy and activism both within and without the scientific community – activities like those of the Methuselah Foundation. So it is that today we can see a lauded, frequently published journal explicitly focused on the fight to defeat aging, a new institute at Harvard backed by the Glenn Foundation and explicitly focused on extending the healthy human life span, a call from mainstream gerontology to engineer the Longevity Dividend, and more.

None of this progress would have been conceivable a decade ago, when longevity research was banished to the fringes. The times are changing for the better; support and funding are growing for serious attempts to extend the healthy human life span and banish age-related frailty. The many supporters and generous donors of the Methuselah Foundation and MPrize for anti-aging research are helping to make it happen. Keep up the good work!

An Invitation to the 6th Alcor Conference

We thought you might be interested in receiving this invitation to a conference held by another organization who is also very serious about preserving life. Please see below for more information. Many thanks,

Kevin Perrott
Outreach Coordinator
The Methuselah Foundation


The 6th Alcor Conference: An Inside Look at the Science and Medicine of Tomorrow

Held at the Scottsdale Marriott in Scottsdale, Arizona, the Alcor Life Extension Foundation’s 6th Conference from October 6-8, 2006, will explore anti-aging research, life extension, nanomedicine and nanotechnology, whole body cryopreservation, cryonic revival and more.

Don’t miss this opportunity to hear the most up-to-date information about the cryonics experiment being conducted at the Alcor Foundation, as well as possibilities of other life-extending sciences.

Register before Tuesday, August 1st to get the early rate!

Register online:

http://www.alcor.org

SPEAKERS:
* Aubrey de Grey, PhD – SENS: A Precursor to Cryonic Revival
* Gregory M. Fahy, PhD – Research Toward Whole Body Suspended Animation
* Robert A. Freitas Jr., JD – Nanomedicine and Medical Nanorobotics: The Path Forward
* David Friedman, PhD – If Life Were A Lot Longer: An Economist’s View
* J. Storrs Hall, PhD – A Door into Summer
* Ralph Merkle, PhD – Nanotechnology and Cryonics
* Brian Wowk, PhD -TBA
* Ben Best, Bary Wilson, PhD and Tanya Jones – Cryonics Organizations Today (Panel)
* Arizona State Representatives Michele Reagan and Linda Lopez – Cryonics Public Policy (Panel)

View our website for a full speaker list and talk descriptions.

LOCATION:

Scottsdale Marriott
16770 N. Perimeter Drive
Scottsdale, Arizona 85260
http://www.scottsdalemarriott.com

The Scottsdale Marriott overlooks the Tournament Player’s Club Desert Golf Course. Complimentary shuttle service anywhere within a 5-mile radius takes you to nearby shopping, movie theaters, eateries and tours of the Alcor office. Take advantage of the onsite bar and grill, Starbucks Espresso bar, luxurious pool, jacuzzi, 24-hour fitness center and complimentary valet parking. Rooms have 24-hour internet access and room service until 11 pm. The 6th Alcor Conference will be held in the downstairs ballroom.

Call today to reserve your room at a special group rate of $169: 1-800-288-6127

DATES:
Friday, October 6 – Sunday, October 8, 2006

REGISTRATION:
Register online: http://www.alcor.org

Or mail your registration form and check payable to “Alcor” to:

Meetings and Concierges Source
Attention: Alcor Registration
7375 East 6th Avenue, #9
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
Fax: 480-990-1889

Registration form: http://www.alcor.org/conferences/2006/Alcor2006ConferenceBrochure.pdf

COSTS:
Register by:

May 1 – August 1… … … .$295 Early rate available until next Tuesday, August 1st
August 2 – August 31… … … .$395
September 1 – October 6 … . $495

Questions?
Contact Connie Gutierrez at 480-990-1887 or connie@mcsource.net

Presented by the Alcor Life Extension Foundation, a non-profit cryonics organization founded in 1972 with the mission of The Preservation of Individual Lives.

Don’t forget that the early registration rate expires on August 1st.

Researchers – LysoSENS is Recruiting in Tempe

The LysoSENS research project is funded by the generous donations of Methuselah Foundation supporters. SENS stands for the Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence, a forward-looking research plan aimed at the development of effective therapies to repair age-related cellular damage.

Lyso-SENS is the latest Methuselah Foundation initiative aimed at tackling age-related storage diseases. These diseases, informally also called “junk” diseases, are caused by the accumulation of some pathogenic material in the body. With advancing age our bodies cannot degrade or remove this junk. Examples of candidate age-related storage diseases include

  • Heart disease and stroke – cholesterol and oxidized cholesterol in the artery wall
  • Alzheimer’s disease – Beta-amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain
  • Age-related macular degeneration – Lipofuscin of the retinal pigment epithelium
  • Diabetes – Extracellular matrix protein crosslinks, due to exposure of the tissue to high sugar levels

    In every case, it is thought that the selective removal of the respective substances would be extremely beneficial, although obviously nobody has directly tested this. Lyso-SENS is an attempt to do just that, in the worst case paving the ground for rethinking what age-related storage diseases are all about, and in the best case providing a cure for them.

  • The first arm of the donor-funded LysoSENS research project is now recruiting:

    At the LysoSENS project here in Tempe, Arizona, we are looking for reinforcements.

    We offer:

  • The opportunity to truly make a difference and bring SENS research forward.
  • Flexible conditions: Your responsibilities will reflect your qualifications. Apply to come for weeks, months or permanently.
  • Cutting edge working environment and a reputable entry on your CV, see www.biodesign.org
  • Research credits for a degree at Arizona State, if you are pursuing one. If elsewhere, you can probably get this work accredited, too.
  • Enabling financial support, but no competitive salary.

    We want:

  • The motivation to make personal sacrifices in order to help with curing aging.
  • Experience in molecular biology, specifically at least some of the following would be advantageous:
    • Culture of microorganisms

    • Molecular cloning
    • Mutagenesis
    • Genetic engineering
    • Bioinformatics
    • Synthetic organic chemistry
    • Analytic organic chemistry (HPLC, MS, NMR, ect.)
    • Social and leadership skills

    Before the Methuselah Foundation will see more massive philanthropic donations, it needs to show organizational success in funding and supervision of SENS research. Since the SENS challenge got the gerontologists talking, this seems to be pretty much the only remaining limiting factor. If you think so too, then let’s do it! If you are interested, contact the Foundation at main@methuselahfoundation.org.

  • 100th Member of The Three Hundred: Adam Kamil

    This is a special day indeed, following on so soon from the results of the $20,000 SENS Challenge: Adam Kamil is the 100th philanthropist of modest means to join The Three Hundred! Kevin Perrott, executive director of the MPrize competition, took a moment to look back on this occasion:

    I’m sure there are many here who remember a time when there wasn’t an Mprize or a Methuselah Foundation. It’s amazing how far we’ve come and how fast and quickly. The Three Hundred are truly morphing into something like their namesake.

    Thank you Adam for joining us in helping to bring on the defeat of the aging process; as for all of The Three Hundred, your contribution will be remembered for a long, long, long time.

    The Three Hundred: Welcome to Kemel Akman

    A warm welcome to Kemel Akman, the 99th member of The Three Hundred. As is true of many of the Methuselah Foundation supporters, he brings a sharp, forward looking mindset to the table:

    Different than animals, every human has a choice in making long-term predictions and thus decisions. No reason exists why the disciplined human mind could not ultimately control anything imaginable which it fully comprehends, including its own nature. As people can and do increasingly create knowledge and values to experience earned prosperity and life, they may extend their biological lives by new technologies with no theoretical or proven ultimate limit. All essential advances of our past and present culture have been deeply entangled with the basic goal of extending quality and quantity of life, in the form of business, science and art. The sole possibility of the endeavor of radical life extension, beginning with the remediation of degenerative diseases, makes it a primary moral imperative for humanity. Hence, it must be carried forward unstymied by ambitions of repressive lobbyism and politics or fundamentalist religions to force any individual what she may or may not do with his/her body. It should also not be discouraged by conservative science regarding feasibility, especially since most critique reduces often to speculative and unfounded pessimism, camouflaging deathist traditionalism. As long as theoretically feasible, a most radical and ambitious schedule is important. Even if any schedule particulars should turn out to be too optimistic, each successful step toward the high goal of eliminating aging-related disease and death will have major impacts on many lives.

    We look forward to a long and fruitful association!

    The Three Hundred: Welcome to John Schloendorn

    Researcher John Schloendorn has joined The Three Hundred, pledging to donate $25,000 over the next 25 years to support the growth of the Methuselah Mouse Prize, or MPrize. The number of philanthropists of modest means who have joined the Three Hundred now stands at 98 – almost to the 100 mark!

    As you may know, Schloendorn is presently working on LysoSENS research funded by the Methuselah Foundation’s generous donors.

    So how is Lyso-SENS supposed to work? In brief, we are looking for enzymes capable of selectively degrading the respective target material in the environment. This idea is heavily inspired by the field of environmental bioremediation (using microbes to degrade environmental contaminants). We are working in the lab of Bruce Rittmann, a well-known environmental engineer, as he has the expertise to find microbes that degrade weird stuff. We hope that we can isolate enzymes from these microbes and deliver them in a manner similar to current FDA-approved treatments for heritable lysosome storage diseases, where the missing enzyme is tagged with certain sugars for targeting and then injected into the bloodstream. You can learn more about the Lyso-SENS strategy from its originator and Methuselah Foundation chairperson Aubrey de Grey here (quick and easy) or here (detailed and technical).

    Welcome aboard!

    SENS Withstands Three Challenges – $20k Prize Unclaimed

    For Immediate Release

    July 11, 2006

    SENS Withstands Three Challenges – $20k Prize Unclaimed

    Dr. Aubrey de Grey’s engineering blueprint for alleviating the debilities caused by aging prevails: “SENS can of course be legitimately doubted, but it cannot now be legitimately derided”

    The science magazine Technology Review has released the results of the SENS Challenge, which was established to test the validity of SENS (Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence), the brainchild of longevity researcher Dr. Aubrey de Grey. SENS lays out a detailed engineering approach to alleviating and eventually reversing the debilitation caused by aging. Following a controversial profile of de Grey published by Technology Review in 2005, Dr. de Grey’s charitable foundation, the Methuselah Foundation, and Technology Review jointly offered $10,000 each to establish the SENS Challenge. This $20,000 purse would be awarded to qualified experts who could demonstrate that SENS was “so wrong that it was unworthy of learned debate”.

    An eminent panel of judges, comprising Rodney Brooks, PhD, director of MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory; Anita Goel, MD and PhD, founder and chief executive of Nanobiosym; Vikram Kumar, MD, cofounder and chief executive of Dimagi, and a pathologist at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston; Nathan Myhrvold, PhD, cofounder and chief executive of Intellectual Ventures, and former chief technologist at Microsoft; and J. Craig Venter, PhD, founder of the Venter Institute and developer of whole-genome shotgun sequencing, which sped up the human genome project, deliberated over the three serious submissions and has now delivered its verdict.

    The judges’ unanimous opinion is summed up by Dr. Myhrvold, who observed: “Some scientists react very negatively toward those who seek to claim the mantle of scientific authority for ideas that have not yet been proved. Estep et al. seem to have this philosophy. They raise many reasons to doubt SENS. Their submission does the best job in that regard. But at the same time, they are too quick to engage in name-calling, labeling ideas as ‘pseudo-scientific’ or ‘unscientific’ that they cannot really demonstrate are so. We need to remember that all hypotheses go through a stage where one or a small number of investigators believe something and others raise doubts.”

    Robotics pioneer Dr. Brooks stated: “I have no confidence that they (SENS detractors) understand engineering, and some of their criticisms are poor criticisms of a legitimate engineering process.”

    Dr. de Grey commented: “The result of the TR SENS Challenge is a decisive rebuke to those gerontologists who have dismissed SENS as ‘unscientific’ and neglected to study it in detail. The Challenge judges forcefully and accurately describe SENS as a radical, necessarily speculative, but legitimate engineering proposal that merits fair consideration. SENS can of course be legitimately doubted, but it cannot now be legitimately derided”.

    Technology Review has also announced that it is to make a $10,000 payment to Estep et al. in recognition of what it terms their “careful scholarship.” David Gobel, Co-Founder of the Methuselah Foundation, commented: “While of course Technology Review is at liberty to make whatever ex-gratia payments it likes from its own funds, it is important to make it clear that this consolation prize was awarded outside the framework of the SENS Challenge, and without consulting or notifying the Methuselah Foundation, which contributed half the as yet unclaimed $20,000 SENS Challenge fund. Technology Review’s verdict is in stark contrast to that of the SENS Challenge judges, who noted that Estep et al. were ‘too quick to engage in name-calling’ and that ‘it would be overstating the case to assert that Estep et al. have proved their point.’”

    About SENS

    SENS (Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence) is a detailed plan for alleviating the debilitation caused by human aging. SENS is an engineering project, reflecting the fact that aging is a medical condition and that medicine is an engineering discipline. Aging is a set of progressive changes in body composition, at the molecular and cellular level, which are side-effects of essential metabolic processes; each of these changes has the potential to be mitigated and eventually reversed. Further details of SENS can be found at: www.sens.org

    About the Methuselah Foundation

    The Methuselah Foundation is a non-profit 501c(3) organization dedicated to raising the awareness of the potential for near-term science-based aging interventions using modern technologies. Its primary activity is the Methuselah Mouse Prize, which is being offered to the scientific research teams that significantly extend the lifespan of middle-aged laboratory mice. Further details of the Methuselah Foundation can be found at: www.mprize.org

    About Technology Review

    Technology Review, the oldest technology magazine in the world (est. 1899), is owned by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. TR’s February 2005 profile of Dr. de Grey can be found at:
    www.technologyreview.com/read_article.aspx?id=14147&ch=biotech

    Full details of the SENS Challenge can be found at: www.technologyreview.com/sens/index.aspx

    www.methuselahfoundation.org
    main@methuselahfoundation.org

    The Methuselah Foundation Blog: Welcome to All!

    I’m pleased to note that the Methuselah Foundation has launched this blog, the better to communicate with supporters, donors and the world at large, as well as relay news on important milestones and progress in Foundation activities. A great deal is taking place and we’d like you to know about it!

    New discoveries in the realm of biological science reveal common mechanisms are shared by age-related diseases and conditions. More signficantly, research suggests that these mechanisms can be modified. These new discoveries indicate that more benefit could be realized by treating age-related diseases not as distinct disorders, but rather as a collection of syndromes tied together by a few common threads. We believe the time has come to declare the arrival of the real “war on aging” and use our new tools to attack aging at its root, the fundamental biological processes which drive it.

    The Methuselah Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) volunteer organization dedicated to:

    • raising public awareness of the near-term potential for evidence-based interventions in the aging process, by exploiting emerging biological and genetic science .

    • conducting research focused on remediating crucial but currently neglected aspects of the human aging process through the nascent Institute of Biomedical Gerontology.
    • offering the multi-million dollar Methuselah Mouse Prize (Mprize), in the spirit of the Ansari X Prize, to be awarded for significant, scientifically reproducible life extension in already aged lab mice, to create a “tipping point” in anti-aging science.

    Tremendous progress has been made in the past few years – all thanks to the generosity and dedication of Foundation volunteers, donors and supporters. Thank you to all, and we will do our best to ensure that many more exciting years of progress lie ahead.