Michael Yamashita’s Blog Scan

Michael Yamashita scans the blogosphere so you don’t have to:

http://www.acceleratingfuture.com/michael/blog/?p=136
… An overview of virtual venues where transhumanists get together to chat about issues ranging from sex to nuclear fusion to Jupiter Brains: Extropy-chat Extropy-chat, aka the extropians mailing list, has been around for more than two decades. It’s the longest-running and most active transhumanist mailing list on the Internet. Lots of extremely …
Profile page: http://www.acceleratingfuture.com/michael/
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 351
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http://digitalcrusader.ca/archives/2006/08/transvision_200_1.html
… This is the first of the reviews I promised. I have watched Day 1 Parts 1 through 4, including talks by Aubrey de Grey, Jose Cordeiro, James Hughes, Bruce Lloyd, and Riccardo Campa. Day 1 Part 1 features Aubrey de Grey. The audio is not very good, but it gets better after the first couple of minutes and you can understand him most of the time. In …
Profile page: http://www.digitalcrusader.ca
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General links to blog: 11
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http://supersurvival.blogspot.com/2006/08/now-cryonics-pioneers-tell-us.html
… Steve Bridge now thinks cryonics took a seriously wrong turn over two decades ago by failing to integrate into conventional emergency medicine. Instead, by following Robert Ettinger’s lead of linking cryonics to the goal of becoming immortal superhumans, it developed a subculture that attracts a small and unusual range of … … Which raises the question of how closely cryonics should get to Aubrey de Grey’s “strategies for engineered negligible senescence” (SENS), considering that de Grey has titled his talk at Alcor’s conference this October, “SENS: A Precursor to Cryonic Revival.” Aubrey de Grey’s career as of 2006 invites comparisons with Drexler’s trajectory around 15 years ago, before mainstream scientists took a good look at Drexler’s specific proposals and piled on the criticisms, effectively destroying Drexler’s credibility for some valid reasons. Because de Grey has nearly made a nuisance of himself in the scientific community with SENS, now other scientists in the relevant disciplines have started to pay attention to his ideas and begun the skeptical analysis. (And I have no problem with that: If de Grey’s ideas won’t work, we need to discover that sooner rather than later so we can find better ideas.) A decade or so from now, will we look upon de Grey as a failed technological prophet like Drexler?…
Profile page: http://www.blogger.com/profile/3456402
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General links to blog: 10
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http://trigram.wordpress.com/2006/08/25/to-singapore-and-beyooooond/
I mentioned the other day that I find the prospect living in Singapore very exciting as this little island becomes a world leader in bioscience and life-extension technologies. I like the idea of these medical techniques becoming common here, …
Profile page: http://trigram.wordpress.com/about/
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http://darlenezagata.wordpress.com/2006/08/23/artificial-life-extension/
… Artificial Life Extension August 23rd, 2006 If you could extend your life by 100 or even 1000 years, would you? Imagine that your body would be young, healthy and strong and that you wouldn’t continue to age or would at least age at a slow rate, would you want to live longer then? Most people wouldn’t want to extend their lives in the current …
Profile page: http://darlenezagata.wordpress.com/
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A disclaimer: Please note that the blogs linked to here do not represent any official position or opinions of the Methuselah Foundation, and are presented here for your reading. The blogs we present represent only the opinions of their owners and commentators.

Methuselah Foundation Chairman Presents at TransVision 2006

I am rather late in noting the presentation that Methuselah Foundation chairman Aubrey de Grey gave at TransVision 2006. You can find the presentation materials at the TransVision 2006 conference website:

In passing, I should also note that Nick Bostrom was interviewed about the conference for Nature – not on the topic of extending the healthy human lifespan, alas.

Some further links to discussions, commentary, videos and other items relating to TransVision 2006 can be found in a Fight Aging! roundup post.

Michael Yamashita’s Blog Scan

We return you to our regular blog scan from Michael Yamashita:

http://tinyurl.com/hza6w
… FUTURIST AND LONGEVITY ACTIVIST AUBREY DE GREY is interviewed at
Fast Forward Radio. … (links to the Speculist blog)
Profile page: http://www.instapundit.com
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 32,264
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http://tinyurl.com/hels3
… Biogerontologist Aubrey de Grey has repeatedly made the argument
that biomedical science could do more to reduce death from assorted
diseases of old age by reversing aging than by researching treatments
for each disease. This paper provides evidence for his assertion. If
brain cells could be rejuvenated they’d once more break down toxic
proteins as well as they did when they were younger. Then the
incidence of Alzheimer’s diease would plummet….
Profile page: http://www.futurepundit.com/
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 1547
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/jstpe
… Category: Political Commentary He’s Dead, Jim I’m not sure what
this means, but I think that Fidel is telling us that he’s kicked the
bucket. Too bad it couldn’t have happened a lot sooner. One of the
down sides of life extension is that creatures like this will avail
themselves of it, too. Posted by Rand Simberg at …
Profile page: http://www.transterrestrial.com
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 1173
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http://tinyurl.com/jeaau
… A Conversation With Aubrey de Grey. Aubrey de Grey talked with us
about SENS, The Methuselah Mouse Prize, and the SENS Challenge. We
also get into why people try to make aging out to be a good thing and
potential career options for the very long-lived. Plus, we look at
the recent news that people …
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/d39tj
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 531
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 4

http://tinyurl.com/fyq27
… There’s an interesting thread over at the Betterhumans forums,
regarding the topic of women in transhumanism. The thread opens with
the following innocuous question: Are there any women on this site? I
mean I have been through some posts and I have not found one person
with the female gender symbol on there information box. So just
wondering. …
Profile page: http://www.acceleratingfuture.com/michael/
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 323
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http://tinyurl.com/huke2
… Aubrey de Grey interviewed on CBC’s Canada Now. This was posted
on YouTube back in February of 2006 — not quite sure when it
actually aired. As per usual, Aubrey’s answers are well thought out
and tactful. …
Profile page: http://www.sentientdevelopments.com/
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General links to blog: 296
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http://tinyurl.com/ergbf
… What happens when one’s probability of living one more year is
higher than in the previous year? This is what Aubrey de Grey calls
the Actuarial Escape Velocity – which he expects to see within a few
decades. Randall Parker at Futurepundit notes this and provides some
interesting commentary on the British Institute of Actuaries
purposeful …
Profile page: http://riskprof.typepad.com/about.html
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General links to blog: 212
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http://tinyurl.com/j8cok
… An article describing a recent Futurist gathering It mentions
that some futurists do not think accurate predictions are the main
thing but being useful and stimulating creative thinking. I think
that being in tune with technology, business and how society works to
be able to make fairly accurate predictions is necessary. Many
predictions are …
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/gyka4
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http://tinyurl.com/enrwj
In Finnish… “… Ei tule luettua yleensä kovin tarkaan HS:n
menopalstaa, sattuneesta syystä. Eilen huomasin kuitenkin, että olisi
ollut transhumanistien yleișluento (HS 17.8. Рmaksullinen
verkkolehti). Erikoista sakkia, ja erikoista sakissa myös se, että
kaverin (A-Ka) kanssa joskus kehitettiin se erästä scifi-viritelmää
varten itse, tietämättä porukan …”
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/k86wh
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General links to blog: 10
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http://tinyurl.com/e7ec4
… Why is the moral problem of extending human lifespan is
inevitable? Let us see some philosophical connection between
euthanasy and life extension: As the moral problem of ending human
life is inevitable , so inevitable a moral problem is the extending
of human lifespan, and exactly for the same two reasons as
terminating life namely i., the …
Profile page: http://pimm.wordpress.com/about/
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General links to blog: 10
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http://tinyurl.com/fwq46
… Joining the healthy life extension community Influential daily
news article about the pimmblog on The Longevity Meme by Reason. Now
LM is one of the main web channel of the worldwide but small life
extension community, so it is an honor indeed. Remember: we live in a
niche, niche world. Today healthy and maximum life extension is in
the minds of …
Profile page: http://pimm.wordpress.com/about/
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http://tinyurl.com/f3k85
… I had my first conversation with an Atheist and the subject was
immortality. She describes herself as a transhumanist. Someone who
explores electronic and biological technology trends”¦ from artificial
intelligence and uploading of human minds to 3-D metaverse worlds to
life extension and enhancement technologies. In short, she’s
interested in attaining immortality, here on earth….
No, for me, immortality in a computer doesn’t have any appeal. Too
flat. Too analytical. Emotionless. Heck, HOT. I’ll gladly enjoy my
time in this physical world, MacBook at my side, and jump at the
chance for immortality in the “coolness” of His heavenly home…
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/z6oap
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http://tinyurl.com/hazeo
…Immortality is just around the corner? If you believe some
scientists studying how our bodies age at the cellular and molecular
levels, then it is in the realm of possibility. Personally I wouldn’t
mind living longer if the aging process could be slowed or slightly
reversed.
But what are the social implications? Should we be living longer when
the planet is straining to support the current population? There is a
nice article over at livescience.com describing the possible impact
of anti-aging research on society…
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/eeo2t
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http://tinyurl.com/zacml
… Stem Cell Therapies Under Trial in Thailand and the UK Today’s
post is from the Methuselah Mouse Prize website and is a summary of
recent adult stem cell trials: Even a brief glance at a site like
ClinicalTrials.gov shows that a great deal of stem cell work is
presently moving into the trial stage in the US. I thought I’d point
out …
Profile page: http://www.vescell.com/
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A disclaimer: Please note that the blogs linked to here do not represent any official position or opinions of the Methuselah Foundation, and are presented here for your reading. The blogs we present represent only the opinions of their owners and commentators.

Interesting Meeting With Seniors Organization

Here in Alberta, Canada, you may have heard that we are having a bit of good fortune lately. With oil at over seventy dollars a barrell, oil-rich Alberta is literally busting at the seams with surplus cash. The situation is so dire in fact that the government is unable to decide how to spend it all. This year alone there is projected to be an NINE BILLION DOLLAR surplus, and no matter how you try to allocate it, it is very difficult to mobilize that amount of money quickly. So we’re ramping up…

But oil doesn’t last forever.. so we’re beginning to understand, and it would seem a wise move to make the most of our good fortune by developing another resource, one more based on human capital and more renewable than fossil fuels. Let’s develop technology. Lets build something everyone wants, something with a universal demand and that constantly runs out, the ultimate consumable. Let’s develop technology that can sell people more time.

I’ve taken this idea, as well as others involving the value of developing technologies to extend healthy lifespan, to various groups here in Alberta. I’m hoping introduce the concept that we could be that global center that is first to the table with intervention-oriented aging therapies. With increasing costs on our health care systems, our aging loved ones would appreciate the opportunity to remain engaged and productive as well as provide that same ability to others. Surprisingly, or perhaps not so, I’ve received a less than enthusiastic reception to this concept. I think its a question of desirability and feasibility. If something is so desirable but is unacheivable, often the response is make it not quite as attractive, and this is what I believe is the psychological defense mechanism one so often finds associated with the suggestion of extending human life. People would love to live longer and healthier but they don’t believe it’s possible and therefore somehow make the association that living ‘X’ years of a natural lifespan is actually better than living X+Y years. This is the surprising reaction I get from many people, but one thing I’ve noticed is that almost all of these people are fit and healthy, very few are experiencing a compromise in function that seemed to affect their quality of life. I found out yesterday that perhaps I’m speaking to the wrong demographic in looking for a warm welcome for the idea of living longer and healthier.

I spent the morning yesterday amidst a wonderful quorum, an inviting group of individuals who are the leaders of regional chapters of the Alberta Council on Aging. At the time I didn’t know who these people were, they were only 12 seniors who I had agreed to meet with and make a presentation of the idea of applying engineering principles to repair the damage of aging.

I opened the door to a large room which contained a number of cafeteria tables sandwiched together to form a single long conference surface around which twelve obvioulsy older individuals were seated, deep in conversation discussing the minutia of an agenda item. I felt a bit like I was interrupting but my fears were immediately dispelled when the Executive Director waved me over and she stood up and started hauling chairs off a stack by the wall indicating they were for me to sit in if I wished. I took my seat and within a few minutes she ‘ahemed’ her way into the conversation and told the people around the table who I was and why I was there. Now I’ve spoken in front of crowds before, but rarely have I felt as nervous as when I was being peered at by a group who had been dealing with people wanting something from them for years and actually started to perspire and I’ll admit at the start my laser pointer was less than accurate.

Still, as the presentation wore on I began to get the sense that my worry that the reaction may have been chilly was a bit premature as there was a constant nodding, smiles of knowing agreement and interjections of thoughtful questions and comments which indicated that far from being skeptical and dismissive, these people were understanding the message. As I went through the first 15 slides of basic cellular biology followed by an explanation that the multitude of age-related diseases are related by being caused by only a few types of damage, these older individuals did not scream and run from the science. Quite the opposite. Many were knowledgeable about biology and those that weren’t, were astute enough to understand the concepts if not the jargon. The kicker was when I got to describing some of the cutting-edge research that I had been lucky enough to hear about at some of the SENS and aging conferences I’d been to the past few years. When I described the parabiosis experiment of Irina Conboy and the regnerating MRL mouse of Ellen Heber-Katz, their interest was piqued. When I made reference to the encouraging dissolution of plaques and restoration of cognitive ability in a mouse Alzheimer model by a new pill developed by Ashely Bush this year, they were intrigued. They asked pointed questions about timeframes and costs and jokingly asked what would happen if they didn’t live long enough to benefit, to which their own response was it could benefit their children. I think that about says it all.

After being asked if I would make the same presentation to their memberships in the different regions, being offered help in the form of sponsorship and even offers of help to organize events I’m planning, I was sincerely and extremely touched by the outpouring of support and encouragement I received from these individuals. They made me proud to be pursuing the mission of the Methuselah Foundation. Here were people, selflessly giving of their own time for their communities at ages between 65 and 85, talking about events for children, a Grandparent’s Day, making charitable donations and fundraising for grandparents in Africa who are left to raise their grandchildren because of AIDS. This is a resource of love and caring that the world forgoes to its own detriment when it can move to help their light burn a bit brighter and longer.

These people ‘got it’ in a way which seemed to escape many others who I’ve spoken to in exactly the same way. Could it be simply because they were older and perhaps suffering the effects of aging a bit more acutely than the fit, healthy baby-boomers I normally converse with? I think there might be an element of that in there, but much more important a role I think is the fact that these people were already giving of themselves to others. Theirs was already a compassionate path and thus they were primed for such a message for helping alleviate the suffering of millions. Additionally, with the perspective of almost three-quarters of a century, and having seen much science-fiction become science-fact these individuals have a bit more accurate frame of reference of the exponential progress of technology over the last century. They do not see the application of technology to curing age-related diseases ‘en masse’ as out of the question. There you have desirability coupled with feasbility to produce hope. They’re willing to think that it might be possible, they are willing to hope that it might be possible.

And hope makes all the difference.

Michael Yamashita’s Blog Scan

The return of our regular blog scan, courtesy of Michael Yamashita:

http://tinyurl.com/p9vq8
FuturePundit explains that british actuaries are no longer able to
accurately predict lifespan as the population seems to be approaching
‘actuarial escape velocity’, and includes a definition from Aubrey.
Profile page: http://www.futurepundit.com
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 1461
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/ph8hx
Phil Bowermeister recalls his favourite past interviews, includes
Aubrey and Michael Anissimov on immortality.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/7mj8h
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 488
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http://tinyurl.com/lstlx
Cameron Reilly links to videos of Aubrey’s address to the TED2006 and
TEDGlobal conferences, and his interview last year with Aubrey.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/h3v8a
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 387
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/mhpq9
Michael Anissimov posts YouTube of Aubrey’s interview on Canada Now.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/hv6qo
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 291
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 1

http://tinyurl.com/pljek
Blogger writes on the TR Review results, with snippets from the TR
press release. Includes link to MF official announcement.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/ohxym
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 257
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http://tinyurl.com/rshl6
David Tufte’s blog links to Futurepundit piece and British Actuary
Society page on the unreliability of death prediction given rising
lifespans – points out it proves Aubrey’s concept of actuarial escape
velocity.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/n7bh9
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 79
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http://tinyurl.com/qafjt
Actuary blogger quotes Reuters piece on pension age and Aubrey’s
comment that future life extension advances will require overhauls of
the entire system. Blogger notes that in the US the age thresholds
for Social Security will need to adjusted to average lifespans.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/lbbdb
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 78
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http://tinyurl.com/qldmh
Blogger points out that resistance to life-extension is comparable to
abandoning or forcibly euthanizing the disabled.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/hkv5c
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 36
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http://tinyurl.com/mm3nt
Attila Csordas illustrates the move that IT businesses like Google
are making towards biotech.
Profile page: http://pimm.wordpress.com/about/
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 9
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http://tinyurl.com/p3bl7
Chris Patil quotes skeptics of CR, but points out their skepticism is
not yet based in solid science, so it’s hard to tell one way or the
other.
Profile page: http://ouroboros.wordpress.com/about/
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 5
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http://tinyurl.com/o75p6
Link to Livescience piece “Immortality Through Science”
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/phv2o
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 2
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http://tinyurl.com/mtdel
Another hit from Reuters piece on raised life expectancies and their
effect on society and pensions.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/olp6n
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 1
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http://tinyurl.com/or7oh
Finnish blogger on the Helsinki Tranvision convention, writes in
Russian.
Profile page: http://finding-brains.livejournal.com/profile
Technorati scores
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http://tinyurl.com/punba
Blogger Parijata Mackey links to ClassicalValues blog article that
eloquently criticizes Leon Kass’ biocon arguments. Also argues that
the tools of innovation must be embraced by the garage hacking
community to catalyze faster R&D.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/m5n3e
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A disclaimer: Please note that the blogs linked to here do not represent any official position or opinions of the Methuselah Foundation, and are presented here for your reading. The blogs we present represent only the opinions of their owners and commentators.

Feel Strongly About Aging? Read the Views of MPrize Donors

If you have ever thought about the age-related degeneration that awaits us in the years ahead, and wondered how to change this future, then let me assure you that you are far from the only one. I strongly suggest you take a few minutes to read through the comments, statements and views of donors to the MPrize for anti-aging research.

It is each man’s responsibility to take destiny into his own hands. Reality follows dreams and I dream of the day in which this tragedy called aging is cured. In my lifetime, or for future generations, I believe that it is inevitable.

After considering the brevity of a normal lifespan and the vast number of potential experiences that each of us will miss because of it, I couldn’t find any logical reason to not donate. I’m putting my money on a project that may provide us a real chance of never having to miss any piece of life that we don’t choose to.

I’m donating because our entire society is based around a respect for human life, and allowing people to live lives governed by choice as opposed to the specter of old age and death would possibly be the greatest liberty we could give to the individual.

In making this donation, I am declaring my desire for a better and brighter future in which the pain and suffering of aging can be cured. I believe supporting the M-Prize is the best way of achieving my goal. I urge anyone reading this to do the same, it doesn’t matter how much you can afford to give, what matters is adding your voice, making your stand along with the hundreds of others who want the same thing. Thank you.

I see it as my responsibility to take some sort of action to help perpetuate the idea that healthy life extension is feasible. Donating to the Methuselah Mouse Prize is a personal act for me, one that takes me from the role of a “hopeful spectator” to a person who has actively contributed to the positive vision of the future I hold.

I have seen many older people in my family deteriorate from diseases of aging and no one could do anything about it… I hope that we can make a difference with the mprize and give people more life.

The process of aging and dying has robbed me of some of my dearest friends and has destroyed their infinitely precious skills, memories, knowledge, and human values. The aging process is now busily destroying my own mind and body. I am supporting the Methuselah Foundation because its founders, unlike most scientists, really are trying to do something about the aging process, and I think their approach is valid.

One day a cure for aging will likely be found. At that point, the questions will be asked; “Could we not have made this happen sooner?” and “Why did hundreds of millions of people have to die prematurely and unnecessarily?” Personally, I do not want to be among those who did nothing. I want to be among those who shared the vision and who cared enough to contribute to its realization.

Many, many people in the world want to see a future in which aging is a chronic, treatable medical condition – and healthy lives are far longer as a result. By spreading the word, we can bring more to realize that easy and straightfoward ways exist to help make this future a reality. Such as, for example, donating to the MPrize fund to encouraging research, or helping to fund relevant research directly via the Methuselah Foundation.

We can change the world if we but set one foot in front of the other, again and again!

500,000 Views: Quite Impressive!

Advocate, activist and futurist Michael Anissimov notes:

Aubrey de Grey on CBC’s Canada Now. This video has over half a million views on YouTube – quite impressive!

The more you look at popular culture, the more you’ll see the sensible, educated demand for working longevity medicine that can extend our healthy life spans and protect us from age-related frailty. That is why the Methuselah Foundation and the MPrize for anti-aging research exist – to help make this desire a reality.

Why should we resign ourselves to age, suffer and die when we could be working to prevent this dire fate?

Methuselah Foundation Chairman Aubrey de Grey on the Longevity Dividend

As noted at Fight Aging!, the Longevity Dividend initiative of scientists and advocates S. Jay Olshansky, Daniel Perry, Richard A. Miller, and Robert N. Butler has moved into its next stage: a meeting of minds in Washington and a call for endorsements of the Longevity Dividend position.

We suggest that even a relatively small deceleration in the rate of aging would yield the equivalent of simultaneous major breakthroughs involving every major fatal and non-fatal disease and disorder associated with aging. As a way to follow through with our recommendation, we are planning an event on Capitol Hill on September 12, 2006. At this event there will be U.S. Senators from both sides of the aisle, Nobel Laureates, representatives of national and international health organizations, and scientists – all of whom will be advocating an investment in the pursuit of the Longevity Dividend.

Methuselah Foundation chairman Aubrey de Grey offers these words of encouragement:

I’m very strongly in support of the Longevity Dividend initiative. I’m especially pleased that, in the consensus document that the original authors are now circulating for expert endorsements, there is no repetition of the dismissal of SENS that appeared in the original paper in The Scientist. Another important improvement is the diminished emphasis on the idea that compression of morbidity is a plausible consequence of progress in gerontology research, a stance that I believe is on balance not supported at all by available data. All in all this initiative is as big-tent as can be. If anyone can pull this off, these people can.

Researchers who aim at a compression of morbidity are seeking to reduce or even eliminate late life frailty, disease and incapacity – but with no expectation of extending healthy life span. The framing principles of the reliability theory of aging and longevity, amongst other work, would seem to suggest that this is impossible – that any successful efforts to alleviate age-related suffering will also extend healthy life span.

In this viewpoint, all manifestations of aging – disease, frailty, degeneration and death – are manifestations of accumulated damage. The best way to prevent age-related degeneration is to prevent or repair that damage, but this will also extend healthy life span. You can’t have one without the other – and a good thing too!

The Value of Research Prizes

The MPrize for anti-aging research, administered by the Methuselah Foundation, is a research prize. Its goal is to invigorate serious, competitive, goal-oriented and productive anti-aging research by setting targets and rewards for healthy mouse longevity.

The Methuselah Mouse Prize (MPrize), is the premiere effort of the Methuselah Foundation and is being offered to the scientific research team who develops the longest living Mus musculus, the breed of mouse most commonly used in scientific research. Developing interventions which work in mice are a critical precursor to the development of human anti-aging techniques, for once it is demonstrated that aging in mice can be effectively delayed or reversed, popular attitudes towards aging as ‘inevitable’ will no longer be possible. When aging in mice is shown to be ‘treatable’ the funding necessary for a full-line assault on the aging process will be made available. This is the true power of the Methuselah Mouse Prize, to demonstrate a proof of principle, and give hope to the world that decline in function and age-related disease are no longer guarantees, for us, or for future generations, if we work together now.

Research prizes have a long and illustrious history; the typical prize is – like the MPrize – set in the form of a contest with a purse awarded for the attainment of predetermined scientific or technical goals that are presently impossible. In this they different from recognition prizes – such as the Nobel and many others – that are typically awarded for outstanding achievement after the fact. Beyond the MPrize, other past and present research prizes of note include:

Why award a prize rather than put money into research? Firstly, it allows for the broadest possible range of approaches; you are asking for the diverse ingenuity of the world rather than relying on your own ingenuity to select the approach you will fund. Secondly, far more funding will be devoted to research as a part of competing for the prize than stands in the prize purse. We humans rise to the challenge of a contest, as research prizes have shown over and over again.

Every dollar in the first $1 million first round prize for the DARPA Grand Challenge attracted something like $65 in investment aimed at reaching the Challenge goals. That’s a pretty impressive return on investment:

The defense agency spent $13 million on the race. It estimates competitors laid out four to five times that amount developing their entries, which rely on global positioning satellites as well as a variety of sensors, lasers, radar and cameras to orient themselves and detect and avoid obstacles.

Carnegie Mellon President Jared Cohon said his school’s vehicle cost approximately $3 million, which was contributed by dozens of corporate sponsors.

Ingenuity applies to raising funds for high profile prize competitions too. Multipliers occur at all levels of the process when you harness the basic human desire to move forward and win. So if you want to put your charitable donations where they will make the most difference … then donate to a research prize!

Michael Yamashita’s Blog Scan

For some time now, Methuselah Foundation volunteer Michael Yamashita has put together regular blog scans for the volunteer mailing list – and very useful they are too. He has also produced some interesting reports on trends in viewpoints and commentary on healthy life extension over the past months. We will see about formatting and publishing these in the near future. The scans omit the material that appears in blogs on the MPrize home page since we all know about those, right? Here is the latest:

http://tinyurl.com/g4rff
Futurist writer and consultant Walter Durzko comments on definitions of post-humanism as talked about at the World Futures Society meeting in Toronto. Will be at Transvision in Helsinki this month.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/zbpmy
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 994
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/hqhsl
Phil Bowermeister proposes long-term investing in the post-aging world.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/7mj8h
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 366
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/h4lnc
Michael Anissimov quotes from David Thompson’s 300 testimonial about life as a funeral director.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/hv6qo
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 207
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/fhpg4
Jan-Willem Bats summarizes the TR Challenge, includes excerpts of judge Myhrvold.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/7ucbn
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 168
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/kgtmm
Thomas Claburn writes on the the Flying Car inventor Paul Moeller’s desire to live to see mass adoption of flying cars and has thus pursued an interest in radical life extension, advocating questionable remedies like almond butter.
Profile page: http://www.thomasclaburn.com/
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 99
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/f28vl
Attila Csordas breaks down the industrial complex that will be behind life extension.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/zyum7
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 10
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/kjkvj
Summary of TR Challenge, takes view that Estep won half the prize money.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/hrevk
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 6
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/z9yd4
Link to Google Video of Immortality Institute DVD.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/kujy7
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 1
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/zgb3t
Futurist E. Scott Jackson speculates on living forever, and thinks it would be like a never-ending rat race.
Profile page: http://www.escottanderson.com
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 0
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

http://tinyurl.com/zlqln
Blogger muses on the potential for life extension, as his father married a very young woman.
Profile page: http://tinyurl.com/fzmj3
Technorati scores
General links to blog: 0
Trackbacks/Links to specific article: 0

A disclaimer: Please note that the blogs linked to here do not represent any official position or opinions of the Methuselah Foundation, and are presented here for your reading. The blogs we present represent only the opinions of their owners and commentators.