Lorton, Virginia – With her generous ongoing commitment, Shannon Vyff joins “The 300″, the Methuselah Foundation’s select group of supporters, who have pledged to fund the Methuselah Mouse Prize – the Mprize. The Mprize is a primary undertaking of the Methuselah Foundation and is being offered to the scientific research team that reverses aging in middle-aged experimental mice, allowing them to live the equivalent of an additional healthy lifespan.
What makes Shannon’s contribution even more remarkable is that it follows the extraordinary fund-raising efforts of her daughter Avianna. Encouraged by Shannon, eight year old Avianna went door-to-door and set up a display at her church to collect over $3,000 for the Mprize. Shannon said, “I wanted to set a good example for my children. I do a lot of volunteering through our church and in our community. I want my kids to know that I’m also trying to help them and their children and grandchildren live longer and healthier lives. This is about families – we’re pulling together as a family to support the Mprize because the suffering and death from aging affects all of us – children, grandchildren. There’s a myth that somehow it’s OK for old people to get sick and die because they’re ‘tired of living’. Ask an elderly person who is trying to escape a burning building, or who chooses to purchase a safe vehicle whether she feels she’s lived long enough and is ready to die! I hope more people will donate to the Mprize, because we need to end aging now for real people and real families – not just in science fiction stories.”
Developing interventions which work in mice is 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 which view aging as inevitable will no longer be tenable. When aging in mice is shown to be treatable, the funding necessary for a full-scale assault on the human aging process will begin to flow. The Mprize will act as a proof of concept, and demonstrate that age-related debilities and diseases are no longer inescapable, for both current and future generations.
David Gobel, CEO of the Methuselah Foundation said, “The Mprize is a bold endeavor, and a marvelous legacy to our descendants. While there is no guarantee that The 300 will be fortunate enough to enjoy the anti-aging innovations that will occur this century, it is a testament to their altruism that they are prepared to make this gesture of optimism and hope for those who follow us. From a modest beginning in 2003 the Mprize fund has grown and continues to do so at an accelerating rate, as the notion of improving healthy human longevity continues to progressively make inroads into the public consciousness”.
About the Methuselah Foundation
The Methuselah Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to accelerating the development of foreseeable, science-based therapies to combat aging. Its main activities are the Methuselah Mouse Prize, which is being offered to the scientific research teams that significantly extend the lifespan of middle-aged laboratory mice, and the funding of focused SENS antiaging research. Further details of the Methuselah Foundation can be found at: www.methuselahfoundation.org
Shannon Vyff’s science fiction novel “21st Century Kids” will be released by Warren Publishing in March 2007.