The Glenn Award for Research in Biological Mechanisms of Aging

We here at the Methuselah Foundation are pleased to announce our receipt of a Glenn Award for Research in Biological Mechanisms of Aging: a further $50,000 towards the presently ongoing SENS research aimed at extending healthy human longevity, and funded by our generous donors.

As for all SENS research contributions, this award is matched by $25,000 from the $3 million fund set up by Peter Thiel in late 2006. It will help to extend Foundation research into bioremediation of damaging age-related byproducts in tissue, the protection of fragile mitochondrial DNA and future programs for other aspects of SENS, each tackling one form of age-related biochemical and cellular damage.

This latest award brings contributions from the Glenn Foundation for Medical Research to $120,000, more than $100,000 of that in the last year. Many thanks from all of us for this aid in our efforts to repair the damage that causes aging. We’ve set a fine pace of growth in the past twelve months, and we fully intend to keep it up!

Please Welcome New Donors to The Three Hundred

The ranks of The Three Thundred continue to grow as everyday philanthropists, folk of modest means just like you and I, decide to make a difference in the future of longevity research. Aging is a curse upon the world, and modern biotechnology is within sight of the ability to do something about that curse – but the medical research community can only move rapidly to that goal when backed with widespread support and funding. The Three Hundred help to make that happen.

Thank you to Cyan Bannister, Plamen Dragozov, Todd Bowden, the Millard Foundation, Craig R. Smith, Gaspar Machado Primgaard and Darren Reynolds – your contributions will be put to work bringing on a better, longer, healthier future for all of us:

Increasing the life span of people will be the ultimate benefit to mankind. If people knew that their lifespan was twice as long as generally excepted, they would have more interest in life long learning. This would increase man’s knowledge – to the benefit of all. Instead of short term interests we would have long term interests.

“There is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come.” – Victor Hugo

As Dragozov, notes:

If there is even the smallest chance that my monthly donation would help cheat death and let me enjoy life longer or forever, count me in. If not, dead people don’t need money anyway.

We are entering the first era of history in which it is becoming possible to buy time with money – the research must be funded and accomplished, but the direction is comparatively clear. Biotechnology is more capable and the damage that forms aging better understood with each passing year. Funding today is investment to purchase additional years of health for all in the decades ahead – that’s a market in which we should all be buyers.

The Second 300 Member Dinner, September 5th

All members of the Methuselah Foundation’s 300 are invited to the second 300 Member Only Dinner this September on the eve of the third Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence conference. Take note and mark your calendars!

The first dinner in Cambridge, MA last winter was an awesome experience, complete with speeches by Aubrey de Grey and Ray Kurzweil, a Methuselah of champagne, and a tremendous amount of fun for all involved. The next dinner will kick off the SENS3 conference, on September 5th, the evening before the conference starts — and so will take place in Cambridge, England this time, of course!

We hope that provides many of the 300 with additional incentive to take the plunge and sign up for SENS3, with its already impressive array of longevity science and esteemed researchers. Even if you can’t attend the conference, it will be a great opportunity to get to know other 300 members, hang out with Aubrey de Grey and the Foundation volunteers, and have an all-around great time. We hope to see you there!

Announcing the Methuselah Foundation Logo Competition

Can you design a logo for the Methuselah Foundation? Would you like to see your work leading the charge in the fight to defeat age-related degeneration? We are upgrading our websites and outreach material, and as a part of this effort need a distinctive new logo that encapsulates and conveys the meaning of our mission and the essence of the Foundation.

The Methuselah Foundation has been built by the dedication of volunteers and donors of all stripes, and so we reach out to the same community in search of a new logo. Think you have good idea and a designer’s hand? Fire up the scanner and send in your work!

Entries will be judged by Foundation chair Dr. de Grey with help from graphic design experts. The winner and two runners up will each receive an autographed copy of Dr. de Grey’s book “Ending Aging: The Rejuvenation Biotechnologies That Could Reverse Human Aging in Our Lifetime”, which is published by St. Martin’s Press on September 4, 2007.

The entry guidelines are as follows – we need a design which:

  • will look good both on paper and on-screen

  • be reproduced and remain legible at a variety of sizes (all the way from a business card to a banner)
  • will still look good when reproduced in monochrome
  • can be used with and without accompanying text (“The Methuselah Foundation”)
  • can be reliably reproduced, employing Websafe and/or Pantone colors and typography you specify

The closing date for this contest is August 15th, 2007.

Lastly, the legal boilerplate: we will ask the winner to assign copyright to the Foundation in perpetuity, and also to certify that the design is his or her original work.

Please send any enquiries and your submissions to: Best of luck, and tell your friends!

Bruno Giussani Interviews Aubrey de Grey

Bruno Giussani, the European Director of the TED Conference series, recently interviewed Aubrey de Grey on a range of topics, including the forthcoming Ending Aging book due out in September this year:

How has your research progressed since your TEDGLOBAL05 and TED06 speeches?

The Methuselah Foundation has gone from strength to strength. The biggest development, among other donations, was the pledge of $3.5m from TEDster and PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel, which resulted from a dialogue that began at TED. Most of his pledge ($3m of it) is a 1:2 challenge, so out current goal is to obtain $6m from elsewhere to match that pledge in full.

OK, that’s about the funding. But how’s the research going?

It’s been going really well too. We are currently sponsoring research by three teams (in Phoenix, Houston and Cambridge UK) on two of the most important SENS strands – LysoSENS, the identification and exploitation of microbial enzymes to break down molecules that we cannot naturally degrade, and MitoSENS, the incorporation of modified copies of the mitochondrial DNA into the chromosomal DNA so that mitochondrial mutations will have no effect. Both these projects are going really well, results coming out of the LysoSENS project have already been presented at two meetings and a paper has been submitted for publication in a prominent journal.

What should readers expect to learn from the book?

They will learn all about the detailed science of SENS. The book is written (largely by my splendid research assistant Michael Rae) very much for a non-scientist audience, but without dumbing down the science at all.

We here at the Foundation can attest to Ending Aging being a very fine book indeed.

Acknowledging the Generous Donations in Support of SENS3

A number of generous folk have stepped forward to provide significant support to the funding of this year’s SENS3 conference, a gathering of the best of those researchers who support and advance the science of longevity, aging and rejuvenation:

  • $25,000 from the Millard Foundation

  • $10,000 from the Glenn Foundation
  • $1,000 from HMX, Inc.
  • $1,000 from the Supercentenarian Research Foundation
  • $1,000 from Legendary Pharmaceuticals

Thank you all! Regular readers will recognize the Glenn Foundation as a major supporter of the Methuselah Foundation, as well as the force behind the Paul F. Glenn Laboratories for the Biological Mechanisms of Aging, and some of the other groups as long-time donors and associates. Gary Hudson of HMX, Inc. is well on his way through the six figure range – a true champion for healthy life extension science.

For those of you with a mind for the history of computing – many, I know – you’ll be interested to know that the Millard Foundation is the philanthropic face of William Millard, visionary pioneer of the PC industry and founder of Computerland. Pleased to have you on board!