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#1 ImmInst

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Posted 19 February 2010 - 05:47 PM


http://www.mfoundation.org/

#2 ImmInst

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Posted 15 July 2010 - 03:36 AM

Silverstone Solutions is one of the Methuselah Foundation's strategic investments made in support of the recently launched NewOrgan Prize. Silverstone's Matchmaker product was recently featured in an ABC7 article and video:

Technology developed in the Bay Area could soon have a dramatic impact on kidney transplants. It is designed to help patients who need a matching donor and a new version may be able to pair up thousands of patients in a fraction of the time.
Maggie Ervin recently started a chain reaction. After listening to a documentary on organ donation, she decided to donate one of her two kidneys to a stranger, as an altruistic donor.

Rather than helping just one person, Maggie's kidney was the first of a chain donation at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco. Over the course of the day, surgeons removed and transplanted kidneys among half a dozen people.

"It's exciting. A lot of people are getting transplanted that otherwise wouldn't have an opportunity to get a transplant," said.

They are known as unmatched donors. Maggie's kidney went to Fernando Rico whose friend Guadalupe Ramirez was not compatible. Instead, Guadalupe donated her kidney in Fernando's name to a different recipient, whose sister then donated to another stranger.


Identifying and arranging these donation chains in time and space - a very challenging problem - is the benefit provided by Silverstone's work.



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#3 ImmInst

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 04:54 AM

Methuselah Foundation co-founder and CEO David Gobel was recently featured in an interview on the Morning radio program for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in Canberra. You can download an MP3 copy of the interview and listen at your leisure.



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#4 ImmInst

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 02:44 PM

Wired is running a photo essay on organ-printing startup company Organovo. Generous Methuselah Foundation donors provided the funds for the Foundation to invest in the growth of Organovo, an investment that is a part of the Foundation's long-term strategy to support and nurture important research:

"Right now we’re really good at printing blood vessels," says Ben Shepherd, senior research scientist at regenerative-medicine company Organovo. "We printed 10 this week. We’re still learning how to best condition them to be good, strong blood vessels."Most organs in the body are filled with veins, so the ability to print vascular tissue is a critical building block for complete organs. The printed veins are about to start testing in animal trials, and eventually go through human clinical trials. If all goes well, in a few years you may be able to replace a vein that has deteriorated (due to frequent injections of chemo treatment, for example) with custom-printed tissue grown from your own cells.


The photos are good, but the article mistakenly suggests that hundreds of millions of dollars will be needed to develop the organ printing system. In fact, Organovo's devices are already on sale to research groups - the large expenditures of the future will be spread amongst researchers who are working on moving from printing blood vessels to printing entire complex human organs.



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#5 ImmInst

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 08:00 PM

We are pleased to make available two PDF format brochures that outline the work and goals of Methuselah Foundation, and introduce the recently launched NewOrgan Prize. You can download the brochures by clicking on the images below: print them out and give them to your friends!

Posted Image Posted Image

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#6 ImmInst

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Posted 07 April 2010 - 01:43 PM

Multi-Million Dollar Award Will Recognize Advances in Regenerative Medicine - Specifically, the Creation of Replacement Tissues and Organs That Extend Healthy Human Life

Today Methuselah Foundation launched the NewOrgan Prize, the Foundation's new longevity prize specifically focused on advancing the development of replacement tissues and organs for humans. Its goal is to accelerate advances in regenerative medicine, which will become the standard of care for replacing all tissue and organ systems in the body within 20 years, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.*

The first research team to construct a whole new complex organ (heart, kidney, liver, lung, pancreas) made from a person's own cells - one that is functionally equivalent and successfully transplanted - will be awarded the NewOrgan Prize. The goal of the Methuselah Foundation NewOrgan Prize is to achieve this medical breakthrough within the next 10 years. Today's launch is a call to action for competitors, candidates and contributors who want to participate in this crucial medical challenge aimed at extending healthy human life.

"Based on our success in spurring medical advances with incentives provided by the original Methuselah Mouse prize, we anticipate that over $10 million will be raised by the time the NewOrgan Prize criteria is met - and the prize presented - to the leading medical R&D team," noted Methuselah Foundation CEO David Gobel. "At minimum, $1 million will be awarded to the research team that develops a whole new human organ that is functional and successfully transplanted." Potential competitors can reach Methuselah Foundation at info@mfoundation.org.

To date, Methuselah Foundation has secured commitments for $3.8 million for prizes to be awarded for specific medical advances. To help support those in need of replacement organs, Methuselah Foundation is also establishing the NewOrgan Network, a wellness community powered by My Bridge 4 Life. At the NewOrgan Network, those in need of replacement organs can reach out to friends and family for personal support - and help drive scientific progress via the NewOrgan Prize. Prospective members of the community can learn more and join the NewOrgan Network at http://www.neworgannetwork.com.

Since 2003, three Methuselah Foundation Mprizes have been presented to researchers, including the Mprize given to Dr. David Sharp for the first drug proven to extend healthy maximum lifespan in mice. All of these prizes recognize breakthroughs that extend the lifespan of mice; they're often referred to as the 'Methuselah Mouse' prizes. In addition to the Mprize series, Methuselah Foundation also funds innovative new companies that are creating breakthrough technologies, products, and solutions. One example is Organovo, which has created the world's first commercial 3D Bio-Printer for manufacturing human tissue and organs. The Foundation believes that this kind of enabling technology will be key to achieving the goals of the NewOrgan Prize.

Methuselah Foundation introduced the first Mprize in 2003 to accelerate the development of revolutionary new life extension innovations. Inspired by the 18th century Longitude Prize, the Mprizes are a series of cash incentive prizes given to the first teams of doctors or scientists to achieve specific life-extending medical goals. Studies have shown that an incentive prize can generate activity worth 50 times its value; that is, a $10 million incentive prize can spark $500 million in scientific research and development. (www.mckinsey.com/App_Media/Reports/SSO/And_the_winner_is.pdf).

The Obama Administration recently introduced a Strategy for American Innovation, calling for agencies to increase their ability to promote and harness innovation by using policy tools such as prizes and challenges. See: http://www.whitehous...2010/m10-11.pdf

Methuselah Foundation's scientific advisory board includes several luminaries in the biological research and regenerative medicine field: Anthony Atala, MD, W.H. Boyce Professor, Director of the Institute for Regenerative Medicine, and chair of the Department of Urology at Wake Forest University; Stephen F. Badylak, Professor, Department of Surgery and Deputy Director, the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh; Robert Cohen, CEO, Miromatrix; Gabor Forgacs, biological physicist at the University of Missouri-Columbia; Keith Murphy, CEO and President, Organovo; and Doris Taylor, Ph.D, Director, Center for Cardiovascular Repair Medtronic Bakken, Professor of Integrative Biology and Physiology, Professor of Medicine at the University of Minnesota.

Methuselah Foundation is a non-profit medical charity dedicated to extending healthy human life. Supported by the donations of individuals and organizations, the programs of Methuselah Foundation include near, mid and long term strategies that advance the mission of ending age-related disease through awareness, education, scientific research and direct community outreach. For more information please visit: www.methuselahfoundation.org.

*http://www.hhs.gov/r...newfuture.shtml

Editors, please note: Broadcast quality video footage with additional information about the Methuselah Foundation and the NewOrgan Prize can be downloaded at: https://download.you...ha0RoeVpjR0E9PQ

or viewed on YouTube:



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#7 ImmInst

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Posted 02 April 2010 - 09:31 PM

Methuselah Foundation funded tissue printing company Organovo continues to generate press attention:



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#8 ImmInst

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Posted 01 April 2010 - 06:38 PM

From the desk of Methuselah Foundation CEO Dave Gobel:

We see the potential for many people to live a long, healthy life who are currently denied that possibility. These are the people who need a new organ. It's April 1st but this is NOT an April Fool's joke. It is good news from your friends at Methuselah Foundation. This is a Pre-Announcement. We want you to be the first to know about the NewOrgan Prize and NewOrgan Network. They will not be announced to the public until next week.

Our new longevity prize specifically focuses on speeding up the development of replacement tissues and organs for humans. The goal is to accelerate advances in regenerative medicine that will become the standard of care for replacing all tissue and organ systems in the body within 20 years, according to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.

Also Announcing: NewOrgan Network for those in need now.

Do you know someone who needs an organ? To provide a right-now solution Methuselah Foundation is also establishing the NewOrgan Network, a wellness community powered by My Bridge 4 Life. Those in need of replacement organs can reach out to friends and family for personal support. Please take a look, the NewOrgan Network Beta site is up and running now.

Here's how the NewOrgan Prize works:

The first research team to construct a whole new complex organ (heart, kidney, liver, lung, pancreas) from a person's own cells and successfully transplant it will be awarded the NewOrgan Prize. Our goal is to achieve this medical breakthrough within the next 10 years!

Early next week we will issue a call to action for competitors, candidates and contributors to participate in this crucial medical challenge aimed at extending health human life.

We have already attracted a world class Scientific Advisory Board for this effort, including:

<ul>Anthony Atala, MD - Wake Forest University W.H. Boyce Professor; Director of the Institute for Regenerative Medicine; Chair, Department of Urology<li>Stephen F. Badylak, DVM, PhD, MD - University of Pittsburgh Professor, Department of Surgery; Deputy Director McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine; Director of the Center for Pre-Clinical Tissue Engineering <li>Gabor Forgacs, Ph.D - University of Missouri George H Vineyard Professor of Theoretical Physics; Scientific Founder, Organovo

#9 ImmInst

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Posted 24 March 2010 - 03:11 PM

Methuselah Foundation Funds Silverstone Solutions' Proprietary MatchMaker Technology, Accelerating Efforts to Extend Healthy Human Life

Methuselah Foundation, a medical non-profit dedicated to extending healthy human life, today announced that it has made an investment in Silverstone Solutions, Inc., a San Francisco-based innovator in life science computing. Silverstone is the leading provider of software that matches recipients and donors in Kidney Paired Donations (KPDs). With this infusion of funding, Methuselah Foundation and Silverstone Solutions will partner to create an online NewOrgan Registry that will connect the millions of people who could benefit from new organs by making their collective medical information available to clinical researchers and scientists. This funding further advances the strategy of the Methuselah Foundation to accelerate medical research that delivers fundamental technologies to extend healthy human life.

"Silverstone's proprietary MatchMaker product is a prime example of using information technology to extend healthy human life," said Methuselah Foundation CEO David Gobel. "Our strategic partnership with Silverstone, an organ pair matching innovator, will save lives today, and many more tomorrow. Our investment will vastly increase the opportunity to source and match organs by moving Silverstone's MatchMaker to the Internet, making it available not only to the largest regional medical systems, but to each and every local kidney clinic. Silverstone's efforts are aligned with our mission of recognizing and rewarding technologists whose work helps extend life. We see a variety of opportunities to apply Silverstone's technology to other organs and tissues, and widen the circle of potential recipients who can find suitable donors through the use of this innovative product."

"We are very happy to be working in a strategic partnership with Methuselah Foundation," said Silverstone CEO David Jacobs. "Their innovative approach is exactly what is needed in the organ transplant world, and the medical field in general. This investment will allow Silverstone to make product enhancements that will significantly increase the number of people we can serve. We look forward to working with Methuselah Foundation to transform organ transplantation worldwide." This strategic partnership is designed to go hand in hand with Methuselah Foundation's recent founding investment in Organovo, the recognized world leader in commercially available 3D tissue printing.

"The kidney matching capability of MatchMaker and the tissue printing capabilities of Organovo's tissue printer heralds the dawning of a whole new era in organ transplantation, regenerative medicine and in the not too distant future - the creation of whole new replacement organs from one's own cells," noted Gobel. "As a result, the Foundation's donors have made yet another significant contribution to save, extend and improve significant numbers of lives."

Powerful algorithms in Silverstone's MatchMaker product maximize the number of potential organ matches in the recipient/donor pool, and improve the medical quality of the matches. Piloted at a major West Coast hospital transplant center, SilverStone's MatchMaker software has been in use since 2006, and has proven itself to be a valuable life-saving tool, already significantly increasing living donor yields - and saving over 60 lives. "With our application now proven, Silverstone will be taking the MatchMaker product to the rest of the kidney transplant world, and beyond," noted Jacobs.

Helping deliver such breakthrough life extending technologies to market, in conjunction with multi-million dollar performance prizes that Methuselah Foundation presents to leading medical researchers, helps accelerate technological and biological advances in regenerative medicine. Methuselah Foundation, thanks in large part to the generosity of its donors, funds multiple strategies designed develop medical innovations. The MLife Sciences program, the Methuselah Foundation's investment arm, seeks long-term strategies to combat the progressive, degenerative process of biological aging.

About Methuselah Foundation

Methuselah Foundation is a non-profit medical charity dedicated to extending healthy human life. Supported by the donations of individuals and organizations, the programs of Methuselah Foundation include near, mid and long term strategies that advance the mission of ending age-related disease through awareness, education, scientific research and direct community outreach. For more information please visit: www.methuselahfoundation.org.

About Silverstone Solutions and Matchmaker

Silverstone Solutions, an innovator in life science computing, was founded by David S. Jacobs, a successful software entrepreneur who himself is a kidney transplant recipient. Driven by his own personal experience, he designed the company's flagship product - Silverstone Matchmaker. Matchmaker was inspired by the need to more effectively utilize scarce, living donor organs and deliver them to patients in need. This shortens the length of time people spend on the deceased donor organ list, saves substantial healthcare costs relating to dialysis treatments, and ultimately helps save lives. In 2009, David Jacobs and Silverstone Solutions was awarded the DEMOgod award at the prestigious DEMO conference. More information about the company and its products is available at www.silverstonesolutions.com.

About Organovo, Inc.

Organovo, Inc. is a seed-stage regenerative medicine company that applies proprietary organ printing technology to solve critical problems in transplant medicine, cardiovascular medicine, tissue repair, and medical research. Organovo aims to solve complex medical problems with one overarching goal: to benefit the health and lives of patients. http://www.organovo.com Organovo, Inc. as a leader in the extraordinary science of bio-printing. The US Department of Health and Human Services predicts "Within 20 years regenerative medicine will be the standard of care for replacing all tissue/organ systems in the body." Organovo, with the support of Methuselah Foundation, is applying its breakthrough organ printing technologies to make that prediction a reality.



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#10 ImmInst

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 07:37 PM

Regular visitors to Methuselah Foundation's website will notice the addition of the Donor's Key Club:

The Donor's Key Club previews the results of new longevity research funded by Methuselah Foundation, and made possible through the generous support of our many donors. News from the laboratories, advance notice of new research results, webinars, and interviews with researchers in fields important to human longevity: all these and more will be forthcoming. Watch this space!

Only donors to Methuselah Foundation can access the Donor's Key Club; please contact our Senior Donor Concierge Kamol Farid if you are a Foundation supporter and need assistance in logging in to the Donor's Key Club.

The first materials added to the Club include an essay by Dave Gobel and the results of research into the biochemistry of supercentarians encouraged by Methuselah Foundation. From this modest start, the Donor's Key Club will grow to be a way for supporters to learn more about healthy longevity and aging science, and clearly see how their donations are used to advance the state of the art.



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#11 ImmInst

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 08:20 PM

We are very pleased to announce the addition of two new Mprize competitors, Alan Cash & Holly Brown Borg. Here are their stories.

Alan Cash
Alan Cash learned about aging the hard way. Although he hadn’t turned 50 yet he experienced a rare and extremely painful side effect of aging. At the time Alan wasn’t aware that our veins and arteries lengthen as we age until an artery pushed into a major nerve bundle and caused excruciating pain in his neck. “I’ve often been accused of being a pain in the neck,” quips Alan, “I guess this was just payback.” A six-hour brain surgery separated the nerve from artery with the help of a Teflon pad.

Although the pain was completely gone, the experience left Alan with “the intense feeling that Aging was bad.” So he decided to do something about it. A lengthy recuperation gave him the opportunity to read about aging. He became fascinated by the work involving Calorie Restriction (CR) by such notable researchers as Leonard Guarente and David Sinclair, because CR was a proven method to slow aging.

He learned that CR leads to changes in metabolism and gene expression that result in increased lifespan and the reduction of the incidence of heart disease, kidney disease, Alzheimer’s disease, type-2 diabetes and cancer. Alan realized that three molecular pathways that extend life as a result of CR had been identified:

1. Increasing the NAD+/NADH ratio in the cells,
2. Chronically activating AMPK and
3. Increasing the NAD+ levels in the mitochondria.

All of these could be achieved by supplementing the diet with the metabolite oxaloacetate. Oxaloacetate is a human metabolite, and is consumed in the foods we eat on a daily basis, such as apples, chicken, and potatoes, but these foods do not contain enough oxaloacetate to continually activate AMPK, the AMP-activated protein kinase that regulates metabolism.

Working with scientists at UCSD and UCLA schools of medicine, Alan showed that animals given supplements of oxaloacetate have increased lifespan, just like animals under CR. And equally important, others have already shown that oxaloacetate provides many of the same health benefits as CR, including mitochondrial DNA protection, and protection of retinal, neural and pancreatic tissues. Human studies indicate a substantial reduction in fasting glucose levels and improvement in insulin resistance.

With his training as a physicist, Alan strove to take the complex biology of aging and reduce it to a simple idea to slow aging and extend life--- mainly to supplement the diet with higher amounts of oxaloacetate. When Alan presented his ideas to a molecular biologist at University of California San Diego, the biologist immediately cleared space and invited him to test his theory! Together they did tests on worms, flies and mice, and the initial data was very promising, leading to journal articles in “Aging Cell”, “Open Longevity Science” and “Anti-Aging Therapeutics.” A simple solution for aging with a human metabolite had extended lifespan!

To publicize the discovery, Alan saw that the Mprize might be the best route, but additional data was required. Various long-term tests of oxaloacetate are underway at UC Riverside, LSU Baton Rouge, and, through the National Institute on Aging Interventions Testing Program, at UT Austin, UM Ann Arbor and the Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor. Concurrently, after submitting extensive safety information, Alan received approval to market the new dietary supplement in Canada, Europe and the USA for human use, under the trade name “benaGene”.

Holly Brown Borg
Holly’s acquaintance with Ames dwarf mice led her to aging research. While she was in a postdoctoral position she began working with these small but long-lived mice to do studies on immunology. At that time she was working with Andrzej Bartke, he holds the Mprize for Longevity for a mouse that lived almost 5 years, double the normal lifespan.

After heading to North Dakota, where she became an Assistant Professor in Pharmacology, Physiology & Therapeutics, Holly continued to follow the progress of the mice. Their long life intrigued her. What was it that caused them to live so much longer than other mice?

Holly began exploring so she could understand what it was about these mice, lacking growth hormone, which allowed them to live so long. She explains her hypothesis, “A lack of growth hormone means there is no demand to make protein and turn amino acid into muscle; this frees the mice, metabolically, to fight off internal and external stresses.”

The human nutrition center on campus suggested that Holly turn her attention to methionine metabolism. This essential amino acid is critical for protein synthesis and growth, and is also integral to metabolism. To go a bit deeper, glutathione, an important antioxidant, is generated by the methionine (MET) pathway. Glutathione is made up of three amino acids, the key one in these studies is cysteine. The essential amino acids, MET and cysteine, can be easily modified in the diet.

The Ames mice have highly active methionine metabolism but when they are given growth hormone, this activity goes down. This was the proof Holly needed that methionine metabolism is regulated by growth hormone.
Calorie restriction (CR) is well known to extend lifespan in multiple species. It has also been shown that restricting MET intake (without CR) extends the lifespan of rats and mice. There are similarities in mice subjected to CR and the dwarf mice which suggests there are common underlying factors that lead to slower aging.

According to Holly, “The mechanisms leading to this potential ‘slower’ aging and lifespan extension are unknown. Our lab is interested in pursuing studies altering the level of essential amino acids in the diet and following modifications to key metabolic pathways involved in aging processes and lifespan. The beauty of these studies lies in their simplicity and potential therapeutic value.”



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#12 ImmInst

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 07:33 PM

Just today on the radio I heard a woman talk about the agony of waiting for someone to die so she can live – she needs a transplant. Everything she said about her situation, and the hopelessness of many, many others waiting for organs, demonstrated the challenges and limitations of the current system of organ replacement.

We believe it’s time for dramatic change. You already know Methuselah doesn’t accept the idea that “everyone falls apart.” (I have a harder time accepting that each year as I get closer to senior status.) Our vision is a long, healthy life for you, me and everyone on the waiting list for an organ.

This year we are focusing our efforts on tissue engineering and organ replacement. We are looking ahead 10 years and projecting that, with our help, everyone who needs an organ will get an organ. To realize our vision we are advocating nothing short of a whole new system. We call it Organomics. It is the science of organ regeneration combined with the economic means to make it possible.

The promise of Organomics is to provide a new organ to any patient in need, not from a donor or from the black market but from their own cells. NewOrgan Prize was created to reach this ambitious goal.

Methuselah Foundation has been working for years to find causes and solutions of deteriorating health and productivity. I’m glad to be part of an organization that drives science to find solutions that will work for all of us.

I challenge you to be Organomical!
Now that you know the science of NewOrganomics, be part of the economics that make it happen. Join a community of supporters and fundraisers who make the NewOrgan Prize possible and help us invest in the science of tissue and organ regeneration. Please join me in making a contribution today.



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#13 ImmInst

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 11:48 PM

Posted Image
In this issue
  • NewOrgan Network: A Community of Support
  • Two To Watch
  • Tissue Engineering: What Will Happen Along the Way?
  • NewOrgan Scientific Advisory Board Announced
  • Organomics: A Better System
  • Mprize Update: Competitors Explore Stress and How to Mimic CR
Connect With Us
Posted ImageVisit our Blog
Posted ImageVisit our Website
Posted ImageFriend us on Facebook
Posted ImageFollow us on Twitter

Also this month
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Welcome James Tippett, Olivier Roland, Robin Helweg-Larsen, Christiane Weidemann, Fred Stuart Thomas, Mohammad Hatem Bahareth, Marko Zoran Nikolovskim, Jon Bischke, Raymond J King III, James Michael Matula, Samantha Brown, Gregory Maxwell, Gordon Frampton and Kara Kealy-Frampton, Bryce William French, Carisa Boyce, Erik Thomas Hatfield, Corbin Stefan, Benjamin Linus, Rebecca Juri, Rory Smith, Larry Lee, Keegan Thomas O'Connor, Barry Taylor, to The300. This exclusive group of donors has responded to the Methuselah Foundation challenge to contribute $85 a month for 25 years. They have made the progress you read about in this newsletter possible.

There are a few remaining slots left, join now and your donation will go to work immediately funding innovative technology that will change science forever. Only 300 members are accepted.



As a 300 member you will receive advance notice of news and events, have the opportunity to participate in exclusive webinars and have the satisfaction of knowing your gift will result in extended healthy life for yourself, your family and all humanity. The 300 monument is coming soon - join now and have your name and message included.

Posted Image
Wednesday 21st, July 2010

2010: Where We Are Now
Methuselah Foundation took on a big challenge: extending healthy human life. From SENS to My Bridge 4 Life, we’ve supported and incentivized major initiatives and research to fulfill our mission. In 2010 we are focusing our attention on tissue and whole organ engineering. Read this newsletter and follow the links to our site to learn more about what we are doing now so you live longer and healthier.

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NewOrgan Network: A Community of Support
The availability of organ replacement for everyone is our vision. But we are practical. NewOrgan Network is a “right now” solution for anyone who needs or has had a transplant.

Last year we introduced My Bridge 4 Life, a wellness network designed to help patients, caregivers, supporters and individuals create a personalized wellness plan. If you haven’t looked at My Bridge 4 Life (it’s free to join), we encourage you to check it out. You can create a Bridge Plan and join or form a Community focused around a diagnosis of one of over 65 life threatening illnesses and conditions. NewOrgan Network is one of those Communities, designed specially for transplant recipients, those in need of a transplant and their caregivers and loved ones. Explore the site; it’s free to join the NewOrgan Network. »

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Two To Watch
Methuselah Foundation is always seeking new technology and applications that will result in longer life. With our 2010 focus on organs we have identified two leaders:

Organovo: combining biophysics, cell biology, computer aided design and high precision deposition to recreate the microarchitecture of even the most complex human tissue.

Silverstone Solutions: their Matchmaker product is a clinical application utilizing proprietary algorithms to match patients in need of kidney transplants with donors. Read more about these exciting initiatives on our website. »

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Tissue Engineering: What Will Happen Along the Way?
Prizes have proven to be the most powerful tool for inspiring radical scientific breakthroughs. That’s why we offer prizes, including the recently announced NewOrgan Prize. The end result will allow many people to live longer and – if history is an indicator – the many innovations that come as a result of this work are unimaginable today. To build a replacement organ, from a patients own cells, and have it fully function, scientists must first develop and preserve all the tissues that build that organ – including muscle, nerves, arteries and veins.

Just 50 years ago the space race began. The innovations that came as a result of that are part of our lives now - including GPS, kidney dialysis and cordless power tools! Read more of the practical solutions that came as a result of the race to the moon. »

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NewOrgan Scientific Advisory Board Announced
Leaders in the science of organ engineering have joined the NewOrgan Advisory Board:

  • Stephen F. Badylak, University of Pittsburgh
  • Anthony Atala, Wake Forest University
  • Doris Taylor, University of Minnesota
  • Gabor Forgacs, University of Missouri
The members of our Scientific Advisory Board are frontrunners in the research and development of new organ technology. In case growing organs sounds like science fiction, it’s revealing to look at some of their accomplishments related to tissue and organ regeneration of the past few years, from the fascinating possibility of Organ Printing to the results of Building a Human Bladder and Creating a Rat Heart.

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Organomics: A Better System
We believe it’s time for dramatic change.

This year we are focusing our efforts on tissue engineering and organ replacement. We are looking ahead 10 years and projecting that, with our help, everyone who needs an organ will get an organ. To realize our vision we are advocating nothing short of a whole new system. We call it Organomics. It is the science of organ regeneration combined with the economic means to make it possible.

The promise of Organomics is to provide a new organ to any patient in need, not from a donor or from the black market but from their own cells. NewOrgan Prize was created to reach this ambitious goal. Read our blog on Organomics. »

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Mprize Update:
Competitors Explore Stress and How to Mimic CR

We know that stress isn’t good for us but could a lack of stress be the secret to a long life? Meet our newest competitor, Holly Brown-Borg. She is exploring whether some mice live longer than other because they have the capacity to fight off internal and external stresses. Fascinating…
Read more about Holly’s research. »

A near death experience drove Alan Cash to look for an antidote to aging. He realized that three molecular pathways that extend life as a result of Calorie Restriction (known to slow aging and reduce age-associated diseases) had been identified and could be replicated by supplementing the diet with the metabolite oxaloacetate. Better than not eating…
Read more about Alan’s discovery. »

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#14 ImmInst

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Posted 18 August 2010 - 10:24 PM

The Smithsonian magazine recently published a fantastic article on our friend and NewOrgan Prize SAB memberAnthony Atala, who has implanted more than two dozen children and young adults with laboratory produced bladders in place of the defective bladders these patients were born with. If clinical tests prove the switches successful, this treatment may become standard for bladder cancer and other conditions aside from bladder birth defects.

Check out the full article here.

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#15 ImmInst

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Posted 18 August 2010 - 10:16 PM

Our friends over at Lifestar Institute have published a landmark paper calling for a global collaboration to avert the aging crisis.

<img src=http://www.lifestarinstitute.org/site/images/blog_img.png>

For the first time in history, the aged will outnumber the young. Battling with age-related diseases and cost of treatment, global economic disaster looms in the future for all of us if aggressive action isn’t taken now. International investment in aging research will give us the chance to slow or actually reverse the degenerative process of aging to extend healthy, happy lifespan for coming generations.

Download the paper here.



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#16 ImmInst

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Posted 18 August 2010 - 10:09 PM

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Join us for two days of practical, realistic exploration of what each of us can do to slow individual aging and live the longest, healthiest, most active life possible.
-Christine Peterson

We are proud to announce a Personalized Life Extension Conference to be held on October 9-10, 2010 in San Francisco, bringing together expert speakers, implementor speakers, and participants to discuss how to take personal action against the diseases of aging.

Topics to be covered include:• Supplements
• DNA Testing
• Telomere Protection
• Blood Testing
• Finding a Life Extension Doctor
• Gadgets• Inflammation
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#17 ImmInst

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 04:18 PM

Parallel research and development communities are working towards the production of entirely artificial organs and tissue engineered live organs. Where the two communities merge, we see bioartificial replacement parts: materials science, xenotransplantation, and tissue engineering mixed into a single product. One contemporary example is replacement heart valves, such as those mentioned in a recent Bloomberg article:

Edwards Lifesciences Corp.’s Sapien heart valve may become the first life-saving treatment in the U.S. for frail, elderly patients with diseased valves after a study found it slashed deaths in those with few medical options. ... Edwards, based in Irvine, California, will use this research and additional tests in healthier patients to seek FDA approval of the $30,000 valve next year. ...

The valve, made partly from cow tissue, is inserted into an artery in the groin, and threaded using a thin wire into the heart. It’s designed to help patients who may be too frail to undergo surgery in which doctors cut open the chest, spread the ribs and temporarily stop the heart. It may also give a less invasive option with speedier recovery to healthier patients.


Heart valves are a competitive area of development: many different strategies are under development and in trials. You might recall that researchers have in recent years shown that they can take donor heart valves from humans or animals, strip out the cells, and replace them with tissue grown from the recipient's stem cells. More competition between different methodologies means faster progress towards solutions that function just as well as the original heart valves they replace, and last for longer.



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#18 ImmInst

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Posted 01 December 2010 - 02:05 AM

Posted Image
In this issue
  • My Bridge 4 Life: Growing to Serve Aging, Transplant Recipients and More
  • Time includes Organovo & Lab-Grown Lungs in The 50 Best Inventions of 2010
  • TEDMED: Martha Stewart, Dave Gobel, Pig Lungs!
  • TEDMED: More New Lungs: Singing Opera after a Double Transplant
  • Organovo: Update
  • Mprize Winner: Z. Dave Sharp Updates us on Rapamycin
  • Silverstone: Update
  • Mprize Competitors: Four for the Duration
  • Tell us: What would you like to see on the website?
Connect With Us
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Also this month
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Welcome Bela B. Toth, Christopher Astfalk, Jaesuk Yang, Glynn Burke, Marilyn Alghussein & Marc Kubicki to The300. This exclusive group of donors has responded to the Methuselah Foundation challenge to contribute $85 a month for 25 years. They have made the progress you read about in this newsletter possible.

There are a few remaining slots left, join now and your donation will go to work immediately funding innovative technology that will change science forever. Only 300 members are accepted.

As a 300 member you will receive advance notice of news and events, have the opportunity to participate in exclusive webinars and have the satisfaction of knowing your gift will result in extended healthy life for yourself, your family and all humanity.

The 300 monument is coming soon - join now and have your name and message included.

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Tuesday 30th, November 2010

TIME includes Organovo & Lab-Grown Lungs in The 50 Best Inventions of 2010
TIME magazine has included two organ related innovations in their November 11 issue and online: The 50 Best Inventions of 2010. In the bio-engineering category they have included Lab-Grown Lungs (see TEDMED article in this newsletter) and something that is probably familiar to you by now: the 3-D Bioprinter from Invetech and Organovo. Methuselah Foundation was an early supporter of Organovo and we share Time’s excitement about the possibilities it holds for creating “Livers, kidneys and other replacement components...with no wait for a donor and less risk of rejection, since the cells are harvested straight from the patient.”

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An Update from Dave Sharp on Rapamycin
A year ago Methuselah Foundation presented a special Mprize Lifespan Achievement Award to Z. Dave Sharp for his work with rapamycin. By the end of the year Science, Nature and TIME magazines each featured rapamycin – an antibiotic used in transplant patients that extended the life span of aged mice – as one of the most significant and exciting scientific breakthroughs of 2009.

At our 2009 presentation at the Friar’s Club in New York City, Dave told us a funny (after the fact) story about how the experiment ended up being done on old mice. Basically, by the time they figured out how to sneak the rapamycin in the mice food, the mice had gotten old. But three labs were on stand-by, set to start so they proceeded – making the results all the more remarkable. Rapamycin reversed aging!

Now Dave has informed us that a second entire replication of the life span study has been repeated with the same results. This time the mice started taking “rapa” at nine months of age. That makes a total of SIX independent replications of the experiment!

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TEDMED: Martha Stewart, Dave Gobel, Pig Lungs!
When the call went out to the crowd of 600 gathered at this year’s TEDMED (San Diego, October 26 – 29), Martha Stewart was quick to raise her hand. So was our own Dave Gobel. What were they volunteering for? The opportunity to touch a breathing pig lung hooked up to a machine that kept it alive.

Posted ImageShaf Keshavjee, director of the Toronto Lung Transplant Program demonstrated the Toronto XVIVO Lung Perfusion System (see picture below), that permits the lung to stay at room temperature and function as usual — removing carbon dioxide from blood and adding oxygen. When a human lung retrieved from a deceased donor is hooked up to the machine, physicians gain valuable time to assess its condition and then treat it using targeted methods, including gene and cellular therapy, before transplanting it into the recipient. At that point, it has become what Keshavjee calls a “super organ.”

Posted ImageWith conventional methods, transplanted lungs are cooled to slow deterioration and then transplanted, with little time to assess their condition or repair damage. The new method has allowed 30+ patients to receive donated and repaired lungs that wouldn’t have ordinarily been used.

A further goal is to treat donated lungs, while they’re outside the body, to avoid rejection by the host, to “make it like self.”

You can see from this picture that Martha got a bit more of the spotlight than Dave!

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TEDMED: More New Lungs: Singing Opera after a Double Transplant
Even before Martha and Dave got on stage, lungs stole the show at TEDMED. The conference kicked off with an aria by opera singer Charity Tilleman-Dick. It seemed like an odd start but we enjoyed it. Then Charity addressed the audience telling us how she woke up one year ago from a coma after undergoing a double lung transplant. Seems that the doctors did not predict arias in Charity’s future but there she was. The story of her complications from idiopathic pulmonary hypertension demonstrated her courage as well as the medical advances that kept her alive (and singing) after what her surgeon described as "one of the most difficult transplants he had ever performed.”back to top


Tell us: What would you like to see on the website?
Here at Methuselah Foundation we are working on making the website current and practical but before we go any further, we’d like to hear what you think. What would you like to see on the site? How could we make it a valuable place for you to visit often? Are there educational aspects you would enjoy seeing and sharing? Please tell us how the site could work better for you!

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Mprize Competitors: Four for the Duration
Mprize is an award for long lived mice; chances are good that any intervention that works to keep a mouse alive and healthy might also work for humans. There are currently four teams vying for the Mprize and their mice are still going strong. Reporting on mice that refuse to die is a little boring. What can we say, they are running around? Eating cheese? Of course, the longer they live the better for them and us! Here’s a quick recap of the contenders:

Competitor: Alan Cash
Approach: Metabolite Oxaloacetate

An age related malady got Alan to thinking: if the pathways that extend life as a result of Calorie Restriction had been identified could they be replicated? Tests are well underway at UC Riverside, LSU Baton Rouge, and, through the National Institute on Aging Interventions Testing Program.

Competitor: Bruce Teter
Approach: Curcumin


Bruce became interested in curcumin, an element of that yellow spice in your curry, when he worked on exploring its use as a therapeutic drug for Alzheimer's disease. No reports on how the mice like the taste. Tests are being run at University of California, Riverside, Mprize winner Stephen Spindler’s lab.

Competitor: Michal Masternak
Approach: Dwarf Mice & Insulin


Studying the increase in diabetic conditions – insulin resistance and glucose intolerance – on dwarf mice (they tend to live a longer than average life) is the focus of Michal’s research. Michal is watching his little mice age at Southern Illinois University.

Competitor: Holly Brown
Approach: Methionine Metabolism


Fascinated by her work with dwarf mice (and Mprize winner Andrzej Bartke) Holly wanted to know why these little mice live longer: could it be because they have the capacity to fight off internal and external stresses? Holly’s testing began this year at University of North Dakota.





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Organovo: Update
We’ve been fans of Organovo since the beginning and are happy to report some of their recent successes. Sales of their first commercial product, NovoGen MMX Bioprinter, are off to a great start. Having their bioprinter listed in Time Magazine’s The 50 Best Inventions of 2010 (alongside the iPad, no less), didn’t hurt. Look for an announcement soon about printer placements in top scientific centers around the globe. Formal marketing efforts will kick off at the December 5-8 Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Society Conference in Orlando.

Organovo has also strongly expanded the ability to define 3D environments that are useful in drug discovery. Leveraging the power of 3D biology to impact cell biology research, and stem cell research in particular, is a focus for the company. These projects will most likely lead to more markets for the bioprinter and the creation of additional research equipment useful to study 3D biology. According to CEO Keith Murphy, “We continue to look for ways for the 3D bioprinting technology to tremendously impact human health, and the entire team is working hard to make new breakthroughs a reality.” Methuselah Foundation continues to be an enthusiastic supporter!

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Silverstone: Update
Methuselah Foundation Life Sciences Fund invests in promising companies, Silverstone Solutions is the most recent of these. Their product, Matchmaker, is a clinical application that allows hospitals to quickly and accurately match patients in need of kidney transplants who have a incompatible donor with an alternate compatible donor. We asked founder, David Jacobs to give us an update:

Polycystic kidney disease runs in my family. I lost my father and my brother. Both my sister and I were facing transplant. As I was on dialysis, waiting while the months turned into years, for a kidney donor, I tried to learn everything I could about kidney donation. That’s when I first heard of paired kidney donation and it sparked hope in me, because my wife and her family were all willing to be donors, but their blood type was not compatible with mine.

Pioneered outside the United States, the idea of kidney paired donation (KPD) sounded like a perfect solution. Unfortunately, we couldn’t find a transplant hospital with a viable paired donation program. Nobody was equipped to analyze the amount of comparisons needed to work up multiple donor pairs. As a software developer, it seemed like this was a problem for which I could build a solution, after-all, it’s a pretty simple concept. If you have a willing but incompatible donor, you can enter a pool of similar incompatible pairs. This process has the added benefit of utilizing an incredibly scarce resource, a living donor kidney, instead of turning them away.

After my transplant I quickly engaged with the Transplant Center that performed my surgery and started building the desktop application that became Matchmaker. I guess I was somewhat naïve as to the complexity of the task and wanted to do something that could make a difference right away.

In less than a year I had completed the first build of the application and California Pacific Medical Center had performed our first paired donation transplant. Since that time dozens of people have been transplanted using Matchmaker and their lives have been changed forever.

The desktop application allowed me to build and iterate matching algorithms designed specifically for doctors. Suddenly teams could perform matches in minutes, plus Matchmaker can optimize the matches, taking into account the best and most number of matches for an entire pool. One drawback of the desktop applications was limitations by its own memory and processing capabilities.

With the help of the Methuselah foundation I've been able to rewrite and re-architect Matchmaker to what we now call the Matchgrid. The new version takes advantage of modern infrastructure called cloud computing. In a cloud computing world as your needs grow you can instantaneously scale up and grab more memory and processing power; but only when you need it, drastically reducing the cost of delivering this type of application locally, regionally and nationally.

It is my hope that eventually we could connect up all of America. The solution could save countless lives. Currently we’re entering into private beta and plan general public availability in 2011 assuming we can raise the necessary funds to sell and market the Matchgrid. My log term goals for the Matchgrid is for it to be unneeded. It is my dream that one day if you need a kidney they will be able to grow or build one for you and things like dialysis, cadaveric / living donor organs transplants will be something from the medical past.

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My Bridge 4 Life: Partnering and Growing to Serve Aging, Cancer, Transplant Recipients and More
Methuselah Foundation supports the important work of <a href="http://www.mybridge4....com/donate">My Bridge 4 Life, a wellness network for those with a life threatening illness and their caregivers. The site is growing rapidly as users develop new communities, sharing tips and suggestions for a wide range of illnesses and conditions.

Several recent additions include:

  • NewOrgan Network – in support of the Methuselah Foundation NewOrgan Prize, this provides transplant patients with a wellness plan and best practices for extending the life of transplanted organs
  • Smokefree Women – this community was created in support of the first National Cancer Institute youth targeted social media campaign
  • Prostate Cancer Foundation – launched as a first national partner and has built a significant international community of very active prostate cancer patients and caregivers
  • Community Mentoring Program – two PHD candidates and a pre-med student are using mentoring tools to guide the diagnosis and treatment phases of the diabetes, obesity and organ transplant communities.
According to founder Roger Holzberg, “The MB4L Consulting Team has completed its first year as a contractor for the National Cancer Institute. The Team is leading the evolution of www.cancer.gov. We have taken NCI into the social media sphere designing, building and launching their Facebook, Twitter and YouTube network as well as creating and running the NCI video production studio. In 2011, we will begin development of the first mobile tool suite for NCI.”

The MB4L team has more in the pipeline...

  • A first project with the National Institute of Aging
  • New national partners across a diverse group of life threatening illnesses
  • Launch of a professionally “guided” network through a hospital system
  • An improved toolset and mobile applications
  • Expansion of the Community Mentor program via school affiliations
</p></p>


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#19 ImmInst

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Posted 14 December 2010 - 04:39 PM

According to co-author Arun Sharma, Ph.D. of the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University an Children’s Memorial Research Center, “Advances in the use of bone marrow stem cells taken from the patient open up new opportunities for exploring organ replacement therapies, especially for bladder regeneration”. However, use in a clinical setting is still years away.

Research published in the journal Stem Cells, has revealed a medical model for regenerating bladders using stem cells harvested from a patient’s own bone marrow. Focusing on bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells or MSCs taken from the patient, the findings demonstrate the plasticity of stem cells extracted from the bone marrow. They found that bone marrow MSCs bear phenotypic and physiological similarities with bladder smooth muscle cells which implies that MSCs can serve as an alternative cell source for bSMCs that can be potentially damaged.

Using a baboon bladder in conjunction with bone marrow MSCs to attempt partial bladder regeneration, they found that the mesenchymal stem cells actually retained the ability to populate a surgically grafted area while remaining active a full 10 weeks after surgery—they also retained the ability to express key smooth muscle cell markers which are essential for the continual expansion and contractile cycles of a normal, functioning bladder.

The use of the primate-based model sheds some valuable light into these processes as they may apply to humans, demonstrating the feasibility of MSCs in partial bladder regeneration. “The non-human primate bladder augmentation model established in this study will also further provide key pre-clinical data that may eventually be translated in a clinical setting.”

Read the original article here.

Let’s help that “eventually” become sooner than later. Donate to Methuselah Foundation today, so that we can build the incentive necessary to get stuff done!




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#20 ImmInst

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Posted 20 December 2010 - 06:19 PM

Mainly limited to portions of liver tissue, bone, or muscle, human regeneration has yet to be fully understood—we’ve only begun to scratch the surface. However, armed with the understanding of how regeneration occurs in other taxonomic groups may enable scientists to improve the regenerative abilities of humans in the future.

Take the lizard, for example. Able to regenerate facial bones, areas of the spinal cord, and their tail—although the regenerated tail does not include bone but hyaline cartilage, the very same that lines human joints—there is much that can be learned from this little creature. With arthritis, osteoarthritis, spinal cord injuries, and the like, the application of these abilities is of extreme interest to medical institutions.

Also interesting: there are several kinds of regeneration. It is most likely that lizards utilize a stem-cell mediated regeneration where new cells involved in regrowth stem from tissue-specific progenitor cells. This is the best bet for a regenerative process compatible for the human system. And so lizards entered Arizona State University biologist Kenro Kusumi’s life in 1980. More than 30 years later, he is still pursuing the answers to questions that have become a hot topic in recent years.

See what's been going on with Kusumi's research!



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#21 ImmInst

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Posted 10 January 2011 - 05:06 PM

What are some good predictors of longevity? Most may immediately think of body mass index, muscle tone, skin condition, nutrition, blood pressure, etc. But one surprising indicator of how long you can live is even simpler to observe than all of the above: speed of walking. Encompassing 34,000 individuals age 65 and older, a series of nine studies revealed that faster walking speeds are associated with living longer, with the most significant gains after 75 years of age. Researchers also found that using walking speed as a predictor for longevity is as accurate as those based on age, sex, smoking history, BMI, and hospitalization.

“Walking”, according to lead researcher Dr. Stephan Studenski of the University of Pittsburgh, is a reliable tool to measure well being because it requires body support, timing, and power, and places demands on the brain, spinal cord, muscles and joints, heart and lungs. Slowing down is associated with getting older. By age 80, gait speed is approximately 10% to 20% slower than in young adults.”

Gait speed was calculated using distance (meters) and seconds. All subjects were required to walk at their usual pace from a standing start. The average rate of speed clocked at 3 feet per second, approximately 2 miles per hour. The study spanned 14 years, during which 17,528 of the original 34,000 died. Those with a gait speed slower than 2 feet per second (approx. 1.36 miles per hour) had an increased risk of dying while those walking at a pace of 3.3 feet per second (approx. 2.25 miles per hour) or faster lived longer than would be expected by age or sex alone.

An 80 year-old man clocking 1 mph has a 10% probability of reaching 90 while a woman of the same age and pace has 23% likelihood. Median life expectancy for the 80 year old man is four years; for the woman, seven. If both their speeds increased to 3.5 mph, the man would have a whopping 84% probability of reaching 90; the woman, an 86% chance, meaning a median life expectancy of 14 years for the man, 17 for the woman. Quite impressive, if you ask us.

Interestingly, Studenski states that the researchers do not advise people to walk faster for safety reasons. “A very important point is that your body chooses a walking speed that is best for you,” she says. We think she means that walking needs to be an essential means of daily exercise; the more you do it, the more comfortable your body will feel allowing for a gradual increase in speed at your normal pace.

Read the original article here.




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#22 ImmInst

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Posted 17 January 2011 - 09:34 PM

It’s winter. Outdoor temperatures have dropped drastically. Inside, you turn up the heat and pull out the space heaters from the back of the closet. You face (and attempt to prevent) the reality of the cold season: Dry, patchy skin, respiratory infections, nose, eye and throat irritation, the flu and miserable colds. Everyone knows it is the season for infections, but what’s less apparent are the invisible and infectious monsters that could very well be thriving in our homes.

The culprit: Humidity levels that are perfect breeding grounds for pathogens. Experimental studies on airborne-transmitted viruses, dust mites and infectious bacteria show that the survival and infectivity of these organisms are minimized by exposure to indoor relative humidity ranging from 45-55%. As can be seen in the graph below, the opposite is also true – humidity outside of this narrow but manageable range offers up a generous breeding ground for these enemies of our immune systems, health and even longevity.




Posted Image









The promotion of allergenic dust mite and fungal populations are also directly related to the indoor relative humidity. For example, dust mites are minimized when relative humidity is maintained below 50% while most species of fungi cannot grow unless relative humidity exceeds 60%. Humidity also affects the rate of out-gassing of formaldehyde from indoor building materials, the rate of ozone formation, and the rate of formation of acids and salts from sulfur and nitrogen dioxides.

Relative humidity directly influences the dangerous abundance or near elimination of airborne pathogens, allergens, and noxious chemicals. Careful management of indoor relative humidity is clearly a key factor to maintaining healthy indoor air quality. After all, we Life Extensionists spend enormous time, thought and treasure trying to optimize our nutritional intake, aka eating - which may happen 4 or 5 times a day. In contrast, every one of the 24,000 breaths we take each day goes straight into our mouth, trachea, bronchi, and lungs - a vast and immunologically OPEN-to-the-outside system. Each and every day our 24,000 breaths bring in 3,000 gallons, 11,000 liters, 388 cubic feet of mostly untreated air. It’s amazing that we give so little attention to what may be hitchhiking into our bodies on this gargantuan, never-ending (we hope) river of air.

So then, in the same way that it is prudent to ensure that e-coli, botulism, insect parts and other junk is kept out of our food supply, you can craft and manage your own perfect pathogenic valley of death, resulting in a more comfortable, healthy home and work environment by keeping indoor humidity between 45 - 55%, the safe range where air-borne transmitted pathogens, mites and fungus actively perish before they can get (in)to you.


Next up: How to measure and manage indoor humidity in the real world.










Read the original article here.


Credit: Indirect health effects of relative humidity in indoor environments.
A V Arundel, E M Sterling, J H Biggin, and T D Sterling
Environ Health Perspect. 1986 March; 65: 351–361.
PMCID: PMC1474709



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#23 ImmInst

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 04:04 AM

The Methuselah Foundation was mentioned in a recent New York Times article on the connections between insulinlike growth factor, or IGF-1, growth hormone, and longevity in a range of species:

The longest-lived mouse on record is one studied by Dr. Bartke. It had a defect in its growth hormone receptor gene, just as do the Laron patients. "It missed its fifth birthday by a week," he said. The mouse lived twice as long as usual and won Dr. Bartke a prize presented by the Methuselah Foundation (which rewards developments in life-extension therapies) in 2003.


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#24 ImmInst

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 11:13 PM

Dear Methuselites,

Every once in a while, we at Methuselah Foundation come across some gems in our inbox from genuine, passionate Life Extensioners like you that just beg to be shared with all supporters of our mission. Whether it's a question, a thought, or commendation, we value your voice! Methuselite Messages is a new monthly feature of our blog that will give that voice more impact, allow it to be responded to by our team and read by Methuselites across the globe.

Please send your questions, reflections, and thumbs-up to: info@mfoundation.org
If your message is chosen to be featured, we will contact you for express permission to have it posted. Thanks so much for your generous support!


Cheers,

The Methuselite Messages Team



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#25 ImmInst

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Posted 28 February 2011 - 08:00 PM


Hi guys,

Hope you are well.

My quick opinion (based on talking to numerous people, all who are angry and saddened by the world these days and all its' the obvious problems with war, crime, etc.):

People really don't know about life extension, the stopping the diseases of aging stuff (and I say stuff, because that's how humans think in their head, not in neat words, as we all know). I'm upset because in this country, and in this state, people are scared of everything, which is both good and bad. So when I tell smart people, about organ regeneration, SENS, MF, Sierra Sciences, etc. they all ask about overpopulation, they bring up the haves and have nots, that only the elite will get it... The problem is simple but no one really knows what is going on. Someone needs to write an article that hits a big newspaper that simply gives people hope that:

1) Diseases of old age are being worked on
2) Hopefully soon we will be able to live a lot longer
3) That they can live the same, or similar quality of life that they have been able to, and perhaps even better.

This is my take on things, based on talking to friends, people who are interested, and family. And most do relish the thought of living a healthy, extended life. People deserve some hope. When we hit our 70's, 80's we lose all hope, because the end IS near, bluntly put. This stuff is as real as anything else in Darwinian existence.

Again, I'm not upset at anyone in the Life Extension community, nor would I ever be. I'm upset at the fact that good people, are dying, and getting older without ANY hope of a future.



Thank you,
Devon







Hello D,

It is the curse we bear that we feel deeply and viscerally the imperative nature of our quest each and every minute. This makes it very hard on us since it will take years to get where we need to go. In order to sustain our efforts, we must surmount any despair we feel in any particular one of these millions of minutes or it will overwhelm and exhaust us emotionally and deplete our momentum.

I respectfully suggest that instead, you actively rejoice that we live in a time where such things are even conceivably possible, and that it WILL happen. Aubrey and SENS are doing a fabulous job of getting the messaging out, and I hope MF is doing its part, but it takes real time and effort to turn this Leviathon of public inattention around. There simply are no short cuts. It took society 70 years for birth control to travel from being a felony crime to a non-issue. Compared to that time scale, we are going at light speed.

Remember that before the Mprize and Aubrey got started, most if not all biogerontologists would either not admit they wanted to fix aging, thought it was impossible, morally wrong or just incredibly silly. Now, in just these few short years, the zeitgeist has turned. We are now seeing with episodic regularity the broadcasting of documentaries touting the nearness of real therapies that will extend the healthy human lifespan. We're winning. It's working.

But minute by minute, we feel your agonized impatience and share it.


Cheers,
Dave





---------------------------------------------






Hello,

May I ask you a question? Is there any evidence that GHB or Resveratrol can retard the aging process? If not, is there anything that shows promise?

Thanks,
Richard







Posted Image

Krill Oil Supplements








Hi Richard,

My answer will be based on my personal experience and is not to be taken as medical advice or recommendation. Having said that, here's my take:

I tried taking resveratrol from a highly reputable source and it made my gums bleed after two weeks, using the recommended dosage. I then lowered my intake and two weeks later, my gums were bleeding again. Naturally, I stopped. Now I don't take it, and the science behind it is still based on mice which is perhaps indicative but certainly not conclusive. We can expect that this question will be better answered when and if GlaxoSmithKlein release trial data on their more powerful SIRT activator candidates. Until then, I think it is vastly better to do the following:

Eat as low on the food chain as you can, making certain that you get sufficient protein and micronutrients. <li>Strictly limit fast glucose rich foods (corn syrups, honey, fruit juices, most pasta, most breads, most potatoes) <li>Keep calories to as low as you can, but definitely make sure that you don't feel unhappy as you go <li>Try eating once a day in the evening around 7 - 10 pm - this simulates fasting. This is what I do!! <li>Find and nurture a spiritual component in life and have stable loving friendships that will last for a long lifetime (I've been married for 36 years :-) <li>Do not seek greatness - seek goodness. <li>Carefully consider risks and their potential current and future impact. Learn longevity based risk management. One of the key risk management strategies I'm following now is of course to incent, invent, inspire, induce, incite and invest in methods to extend the healthy human lifespan for all. <li>I take 3 grams of Krill oil each day. Depending on your age 40 yrs and up, you will likely feel actual benefits from this in the form of reduced joint pain (and most importantly lower inflammation), clearer - faster thinking, generally better moods and just possibly minor reversal of stiffness of the lens (this is not supposed to be possible). I used to take fish oil, but felt no positive benefits. It's tantalizingly interesting that the mammal with the greatest longevity by far is the bowhead whale. This whale has been documented to be able to live (perhaps much) longer than 200 years. It swims exclusively in the arctic, and feeds almost exclusively on Krill which are just above plants on the food chain, and their bodies must still be able to operate at temperatures that would freeze us solid. The phospholipids in Krill oil seem to be able to survive digestion and actually deliver phospholipids to the cells. If I could only take ONE supplement it would be Krill oil.
<li>Note that the most effective ways to hold aging back are what you AVOID rather than what you take. Avoid tobacco, avoid drugs, avoid unfixable frustrations (death, taxes, politics, polemics, fools). Avoid fast glucose/sugar, avoid processed foods, avoid too many calories, avoid sitting on your can all day, avoid watching commercials that make you feel constantly dissatisfied, avoid complexity and unproductive/painful entanglements in your life...stuff like that is crucially important.Out of all of the above, the key is to learn self control. Without self control, our lives are like buildings without reliable foundations. We're like the leaning tower of Pisa...interesting to look at, but constantly having to prop up, rejigger, invest never ending funds, never being able to say - ok I can trust that I can let this go for awhile without having to fret about it.</ul>

I hope some of this helps, and it's not too vague!


Thank you,
Dave Gobel



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#26 ImmInst

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Posted 16 March 2011 - 05:15 PM


• Don't sweat the small stuff.
• Wear sun block daily.
• Drink plenty of green tea and water.
• Reduce stress.
• Be cheerful and optimistic about life.
• Get a pet.
• Marry.

Sound familiar? Of course it does. Every day, we are bombarded with similar information on how to live longer from the news, films, websites, blogs, radio, magazines, health-conscious friends, and our mothers. One would think this body of knowledge was based on an extensive and exhaustive study on longevity that spanned lifetimes, but such is the nature of conventional, antecdotal wisdom--often, a solid foundation simply does not exist. In fact, what may be thought of as shortcuts to long life, for certain groups of people, may have the exact opposite affect. Some of what we may think will benefit ourselves and our loved ones could actually rob us of years later on in life.

Psychology professors Howard S. Friedman and Leslie R. Martin, through a two-decade-long odyssey aptly named The Longevity Project (Penguin, $25.95, March 3), attempts to shed new and almost blindingly bright light into the broad shade of accepted thinking on the subject of longevity. How is it that some individuals are more susceptible to disease, have a longer recovery period, and die sooner while others of the same demographic thrive? With all the possible explanations for it - be it careers, risk-taking behavior, lack of religion, anxiety, lack of exercise, pessimism, unsociability, etc. - why are none of these possibilities well-studied over the long term, following subjects' lives step-by-step?

As staff researchers and 1996 UC Riverside alumna (Ph.D) Friedman and Martin have taken on an unprecedented study, refining and supplementing data gathered by the late Stanford University psychologist Louis Terman and subsequent researchers on more than 1,500 bright children, all around 10 years old when the first became subjects of the study in 1921.

"It's surprising just how often common assumptions -- by both scientists and the media -- are wrong," said Friedman, distinguished professor of psychology who led the 20-year study. "Probably our most amazing finding was that personality characteristics and social relations from childhood can predict one's risk of dying decades later... This is what is thrilling to me- to go beyond the trivial. I don't really much care whether walnuts have more omega-3 fatty acids than pecans; I want to know which fundamental patterns of living lead to long, healthy lives."


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The Longevity Project followed the children through their lives, examining and collecting information for each child into adulthood that included relationships, family histories, hobbies, teacher and parent ratings on personality, pet ownership, education levels, job success, military service, and a host of other aspects of life generally regarded as (or mistaken for) minutiae.

"When we started," Friedman recalled, "we were more frustrated with the state of research about individual differences, stress, health and longevity." Friedman and Martin began in 1991, planning on spending only six months examining predictors of longevity and health among the study participants, only to find themselves continuing the project over the next two decades, working with a team of more than 100 graduate and undergraduate students who evaluated interviews, analyzed tens of thousands of pages of information, and tracked down death certificates. The results were surprising for everyone.

"One of the findings that really astounds people, including us, is that the Longevity Project participants who were the most cheerful and had the best sense of humor as kids lived shorter lives, on average, than those who were less cheerful and joking. It was the most prudent and persistent individuals who stayed healthiest and lived the longest," said Martin, now working at La Sierra University in Riverside as a psychology professor.

So while a cheerful, optimistic approach can help in a crisis, apparently those kids tended to take more health risks through the years. "[T]oo much of a sense that 'everything will be just fine' can be dangerous because it can lead one to be dangerous because it can lead one to be careless about things that are important to health and long life. Prudence and persistence, however, led to a lot of important benefits for many years. It turns out that happiness is not a root cause of good health. Instead, happiness and health go together because they have common roots," Friedman notes.

Many of the Longevity Project findings fly in the face of conventional understanding about ways to extend the healthy human lifespan. For example:

• "Don't work too hard, don't stress," doesn't work as advice for good health and long life. Terman subjects who were the most involved and committed to their jobs did the best. Continually productive men and women lived much longer than their more laid-back comrades.

• People who feel loved and cared for report a better sense of well being, but it doesn't help them live longer. The clearest health benefit of social relationships comes from being involved with and helping others. The groups you associate with often determine the type of person you become - healthy or unhealthy.

• Marriage may be good for men's health, but it doesn't really matter for women. Steadily married men - those who remained in long-term marriages - were likely to live to age 70 and beyond; fewer than one-third of divorced men were likely to live to 70; and men who never married outlived those who remarried and significantly outlived those who divorced - but they did not live as long as married men.

• Being divorced is much less harmful to women's health. Women who divorced and did not remarry lived nearly as long as those who were steadily married.

• Playing with pets is not associated with longer life. Pets may sometimes improve well-being, but they are not a substitute for friends.


And that's only listing a few. But wait, the first step, according to Friedman and Martin, is to throw away the lists and stop worrying about worrying.

"Some of the minutiae of what people think will help us lead long, healthy lives, such as worrying about the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids in the foods we eat, actually are red herrings, distracting us from the major pathways," Friedman notes. "When we recognize the long-term healthy and unhealthy patterns in ourselves, we can begin to maximize the healthy patterns." Martin concludes: "Thinking of making changes as taking 'steps' is a great strategy. You can't change major things about yourself overnight. But making small changes, and repeating those steps can eventually create that path to longer life."


So what think you, Methuselites? Are there small changes that you can envision yourself making in the immediate future that will improve or create new, healthy habits that may lead to longer life? Read up on The Longevity Project with us and let us know your thoughts! We'd love to hear them.







Reference: Greenwood, Veronique. "The Longevity Project: Decades of Data Reveal Paths to Long Life." The Atlantic March 10, 2011: 1. The Atlantic Monthly Group. Web. Web. 15 Mar. 2011





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#27 ImmInst

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Posted 05 April 2011 - 04:50 PM

In what is the largest single-hospital kidney swap in the history of California, five patients received five kidneys from healthy donors in a marathon series of operations on Friday, April 1st 2011 at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco. "Paired donation" is the procedure that makes it possible, a relatively new phenomenon in transplantation surgery that allows for a live kidney going to someone who has a friend or relative willing to donate an organ not compatible for them but a match for someone else. The donor matches one who needs a kidney and that patient's incompatible donor matches someone else and so on, like a chain.


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The Silverstone Matchmaker, a break-through computer software, makes the pairings possible. It quickly computes the myriad of possible matches in a pool of prospective donors and recipients, minimizing time and effort that the transplant center needs to reach this goal. David Jacobs of San Francisco started developing the system for California Pacific as he recovered from his own kidney transplant surgery in December of 2004. At 54 years old, after losing a brother to kidney disease, he says that he is grateful that he can help others.

"y providing doctors and clinicians the ability to rapidly and accurately build sophisticated cross-matching tables for paired donations from a varying set of recipient and donor clinical records... [t]hese cross-matching tables enable transplant professionals to rapidly find and analyze potential organ donations by mixing and matching a varying pool of potential donors with recipients in order to provide the best possible placement of compatible organs with recipients that are in need."


The surgery involved six women and four men, five donors and five recipients. Not one of the patients needing kidneys were compatible with his or her willing donor, be it a friend, spouse or adult child, but another donor was found through the Matchmaker.

An example: 62 year old Alan Langstraat was not a match for his wife of 38 years, April, who inherited a painful condition that caused multiple cysts to form on the kidneys, enlarging her organs. Alan was rejected as a donor until he learned he could be part of the donation chain that made it possible for him to donate to another recipient, making it possible for his wife to receive a kidney from a stranger who agreed to the swap.

"It's a rare opportunity," Langstraat said before a surgeon removed one of his kidneys. "This is exactly what we should be doing," said his wife April, noting the irony of the surgery being performed both on her namesake month and on April Fool's. She feels blessed that she has options, and remembers with sadness that her uncle, who died of kidney disease, never had such an opportunity.


Posted ImageKidney recipient April and husband/donor Alan Langstraat share a kiss before his surgery.
(Photo cred: Lea Suzuki / The San Francisco Chronicle)


69 year old Leslie Warner is among the five who received a new kidney. "Certainly it's nice if this works out for, hopefully, five people who are getting kidneys from five other people who want to help. That's very gratifying and exciting," she said. She was moved to tears that all her four sons wanted to be tested to see if any of them would be a match. 44 year old David Sidle was the only son to match his mother's blood type, but a difference in antigens would have caused her to build up antibodies against his kidney. So when Sidle was informed of the possibility to participate in paired donor surgery, he described it as a no-brainer.

"The best outcome for my mom is to get a living donor," he said. "If I donate a kidney to someone else, that's what makes that possible. It's the same outcome for her, even though it's not my kidney."

Another recipient, 70 year old Susan Nelson, developed kidney disease from strep throat as a child. After hearing the news about receiving a new organ, she was so excited she practically jumped off her gurney in her hospital gown to go to surgery Friday morning. (Imagine that-- a 70 year old woman!)

"This is really going to happen, Suzi," said her husband of 48 years, Dick."[b]Hot dog!" she said before kissing him and shuffling off into surgery.


A 50 year old friend of Susan's offered to donate a kidney but was rejected as incompatible with Susan. However, she was a match for another patient in the 10-person circle and someone else became a match for Susan Nelson.

When the Nelsons arrived at the hospital at 6 am Friday morning, they looked at people all around them and wondered if Susan's donor was among them. "You don't know who it is and it really doesn't make a difference," Dick Nelson said. "It's a gift."


Posted ImageDr. Assad Hassoun cleans Alan Lanstraat's kidney after removing it
(Photo cred: Lea Suzuki / The San Francisco Chronicle)


5 transplant surgeons, 4 anesthesiologists, 10 operating room nurses, a team of more than 40 support staff, and 4 operating rooms were involved in the process. The first surgery began at 7:30 am. The last patient rolled out of surgery 10 hours later. Hospital officials said that all patients were doing well Friday evening and are expected to be released early next week.

Methuselah Foundation wants to help make gifts like this much more available for the 83,000 people currently on the US waiting list for kidney transplants. In 2009, the number of live kidney donors declined to a shocking number of 6,387, according to the National Kidney Foundation. That is why we proudly support David Jacobs' Silverstone Matchmaking and the groundbreaking efforts on the tissue and whole organ regeneration front. We are asking for your continued support so that together, we might make an organ wait list a thing of the past.




Reference: Colliver, Victoria. "Hospital's 5-transplant Kidney Swap a State Record." San Francisco Chronicle. Hearst Newspapers, 02 Apr. 2011. Web. 04 Apr. 2011. .



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#28 ImmInst

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 10:55 PM

Posted ImageCredit: Photo Illustration by Kenji Aoki for The New York Times; Prop Stylist: Nell Tivnan. Source: U.S.D.A. 2009 Estimates

With the average American consuming 2 to 3 pounds of sugar weekly, it's not a shocker that 62% of adults and 34% of children in the U.S. today are overweight or obese. Sugar consumption has drastically escalated from 26 pounds per person per year to a massive 135 pounds just in the past twenty years. Now the obesity epidemic has reached the far corners of the earth. Japan, China, Korea, Australia, and throughout Europe--countries where some of the oldest, healthiest people of the world reside--are now experiencing their own overwhelming surges of obese and overweight populations.

Robert Lustig, a specialist in pediatric hormone disorders and a leading expert in childhood obesity at the University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine (one of the best med schools in the country) gave a lecture called "Sugar: The Bitter Truth" that went viral on YouTube July of 2009. It has since been viewed well over 800,000 times, gaining new viewers at a rate of about 50,000 per month. Not bad for a 90-minute discussion about the biochemistry of fructose and human physiology, no?


If his stance on the matter of sugar is right, then our excessive consumption of it is the primary reason that the numbers of obese and diabetic Americans have skyrocketed in the past 30 years. But more than that, if Lustig is right, then sugar is the likely culprit of other chronic ailments widely considered to be diseases of Western lifestyles: heart disease, hypertension, and many common cancers. So baking a cake for a party, sharing a hot chocolate with marshmallows by the fire, getting that venti extra-whip caramel macchiato from Starbucks, or that pint of ice-cream after a break-up are not just unhealthy indulgences but actually toxic and harmful, no matter how much love goes into the experience? It's safe to affirm that Robert Lustig would vote "YES". Armed with genuine expertise and a carefully accumulated and synthesized mass of evidence, Lustig feels that his findings are compelling enough to convict sugar. According to him, it is the enemy.

His argument is not about the consumption of empty calories but that sugar has unique properties (specifically the manner that the human body metabolizes the fructose in it) that may make it singularly harmful if consumed in sufficient quantities. In describing this concept, Lustig uses the phrase "isocaloric but not isometabolic" which means that we can eat 100 calories of glucose, say from a potato or bread and 100 calories of sugar (half glucose and half fructose) and they will be metabolized differently, impacting our bodies differently. The calories are the same, but the metabolic consequences quite differ. Glucose (from sugar and starches) is metabolized by every cell in your body, whereas your liver primarily metabolizes the fructose component of sugar and high fructose corn syrup.

Lustig makes the compelling case that sugar is a "toxin" or a "poison", even "evil"
and that high fructose corn syrup is "the most demonized additive known to man".

"It's not about the calories," he says.
"It has nothing to do with calories. It's a poison by itself."



Here's the thing: The condition called insulin resistance, now understood as the fundamental issue of Type 2 diabetes and is common to obese and overweight individuals, is induced by the liver converting sufficient quantities of fructose into fat. This may also be the underlying defect in many cancers. But not everyone resistant to insulin becomes diabetic. Some continue to secrete sufficient insulin to overcome their cells' resistance to the hormone. However, chronically elevated insulin levels lead to harmful consequences on its very own-- heart disease, higher triglyceride levels and blood pressure, lower levels of HDL ("good") cholesterol, and further worsening insulin resistance, a.k.a. metabolic resistance.

Now physicians and medical authorities have come to accept the idea that metabolic syndrome is a major, if not the major risk factor for diabetes and heart disease. According to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an estimated 75 million Americans suffer from metabolic syndrome. And for those who have heart attacks, metabolic syndrome will be the likely cause.

The National Institutes of Health are at the moment supporting disappointingly few clinical trials related to sugar and high-fructose corn syrup in the U.S. All of these studies are small and will last no more than a few months, one of which will be conducted by Lustig and his colleagues in UCSF, looking into what happens when obese teenagers consume no sugar other than that found naturally occurring in their daily fruits and vegetables. Another study will do the same with pregnant women to determine if their babies are born healthier and leaner.

Is sugar really as evil as Lustig claims it to be? It very well could be. Because of the particular way we metabolize fructose and at the levels that we consume it now, fat can accumulate in our livers, insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome can follow, thus initiating the process that leads to the heart disease, obesity, and diabetes that has been slowly killing the people of this country and now, the world. Sugar and high-fructose corn syrup may be toxic, but they take some time to do big damage. It doesn't happen overnight. But one thing is clear: Until long-term studies are done, we won't know for sure. With the way things are going, there will have to be definitive answers very soon. And some pretty big changes must be made.

Find out more here.





Reference:

Taubes, Gary. "Is Sugar Toxic?" The New York Times. The New York Times Company, 13 Apr. 2011. Web. 18 Apr. 2011. .



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#29 ImmInst

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Posted 12 May 2011 - 07:46 PM

Take the current paradigm for an average life span: Start working in the mid to late teens, go to college, slave through your adulthood, retire in your mid-sixties and spend the rest of your days in a rocking chair with a lemonade in hand, playing chess in the park, crocheting, or on the golf range. Of course, there's also a much bleaker picture associated with the conventional concept of old age. Smelly nursing homes, negligent caregivers, dull retirement communities... you get the picture. By this stage in life, most people expect that it won't (it just can't) last for very long.

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But demographers predict that by 2030, average life expectancy will have climbed past 80 and citizens over 65 will make up more than 20 percent of the country's population. The world's population is aging at unprecedented rates; more are exceeding 80 years than ever before and the baby boomer bulge is swelling the ranks of those in their 60s and beyond. Along with the transformations that are already occurring in the makeup of the U.S. workforce, the health care system, and even the layout of cities, the needs and desires of the elderly will become a more important and prominent aspect of our culture. The years after age 65 will account for an increasingly large portion of our lives, whether we be mere witnesses of it at present in our youth or caregivers for our parents or living our elderly years now.

So it might be a failure of imagination to continue with the accepted perception that even as old age lasts longer and becomes more prevalent in society, the concept of elderly institutionalization and other expectations of life as an elderly person will remain intact. The very definition of "Old Age" is evolving into something that scientists and Life Extensionists like you and me can be a little more comfortable with. Of course, there is still so much that needs doing and supporting Methuselah Foundation is an excellent way to fortify the concentrated efforts into making Old Age a healthier, less limiting and much more fulfilling time in one's life.

"We're looking at people living 30 to 40 years longer than they did 100 years ago," said Joseph Coughlin, director of the MIT AgeLab. "More of your adult life will be lived after the age of 50 than before age 50. The question is, what're you going to do with it?"

The American concept of old age as we know it today owes much of its structure to a government decision made in 1935 when the Social Security Act set a mandatory retirement age of 65. The idea was definitely a product of its time, when medical breakthroughs sent infant mortality rates plummeting and life expectancy soaring. Older workers were competing with a lot more young ones for work. "There was actually a theory, called 'disengagement theory,' that said it was mutually beneficial for older adults to remove themselves from active, productive roles in society," said David Burdick, director of the Stockton Center on Successful Aging in New Jersey. The retirement system was essentially designed to ease obsolete old people out of the workforce to make room for the American youth and even with retirement eventually ceasing to be mandatory in the US, the Social Security Act left in its wake a potent legacy in marking 65 as the fault line in the public imagination between citizens whom our society values and those considered no longer productive.

Fortunately that fault line has begun to fade in recent years as more 65 year olds elect to stay in the workforce because of insufficient retirement or because they aren't keen on quitting just yet . "You look at surveys of baby boomers, something like 80 percent of them say they want to continue working after the age of retirement," said Richard Adler, an affiliate of the Palo Alto nonprofit The Institute for the Future.

By the time the baby boomers have had at it, old age will probably be a completely different beast than when they found it. That's where a major cultural shift comes in. The baseline assumptions of future old people won't be of those who grew up in the 40s or even the 60s. They'll be shaped by people who came of age texting their friends, consulting their smart phones for where to eat dinner, talking to family on the other side of the world on webcam, and expecting to be generating and receiving information in a way completely foreign to those who reached adulthood way before the internet craze.

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"Younger generations are much more proficient in navigating this gray line between the physical world and the virtual world, and they'll continue that as they age," said George Demiris, an associate professor of biobehavioral nursing and health systems at the University of Washington. In this way, isolation and boredom - two of the most intimidating challenges the elderly face - is likely to be minimized or even disappear altogether for many. Even a housebound person is more than able to stay engaged in the world, promising a positive impact, a restoration of sorts of the social status of elderly people. They will still be able to exert influence in the market and the number of things they won't be able to perform can be sharply reduced. A sense of independence and dignity can be encouraged, maintained and prolonged. The burden of caring for elderly parents might be considerably lighter. Sounds like everyone wins, doesn't it?

The future of old age can and should be a bright one. Imagine individuals in our society that have both decades of experience and the robust health and stamina to exert a positive force on the social and economic aspects of our society! It would be one of the greatest gifts we could ever give to our parents, our selves, our children, and the generations to come. The Methuselah Foundation is eager to do all we can in this endeavor. We are deeply grateful for your loyal support in extending this gift that just keeps on giving.



Reference:

Neyfakh, Leon. "The Future of Old." The Boston Globe. Globe Newspaper Company, 08 May 2011. Web. 11 May 2011. <a href="http://usafamilymedi...0051230.gif/a>.




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#30 ImmInst

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Posted 18 May 2011 - 08:56 PM

"There's a very good chance that this study will eventually have a major impact on many disorders that afflict humankind," said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Editor-in-Chief of The FASEB Journal where the study is published. "These scientists have basically used the body's repair mechanisms to make new tissues through bioengineering. In years to come, starfish and salamanders will have nothing on us!"

A new method discovered by Yale scientists could be a major milestone in the science of human tissue regeneration and engineering. Because of their discovery, new evidence is provided to support a major shift in the paradigm of the accepted science of tissue engineering from the concept that cells added to a graft pre-implantation are the building blocks of tissue, to a new concept that engineered tissue constructs can actually mobilize the body's own reparative mechanisms. This includes complex tissue regeneration.

"We believe that through an understanding of human vascular biology, coupled with technologies such as tissue engineering, we can introduce biological grafts that mimic the functional properties of native vessels and that are capable of growing with the patients," said Christopher K. Breuer from Yale University School of Medicine.

Breuer and colleagues conducted a three-part study in mice, beginning with two groups. The first expressed a gene that made all its cells fluorescent green. The second was normal.

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The first part of the study involved extracting bone marrow cells from the mice that expressed green cells, the researchers added them to previously designed biodegradable scaffolds. They then implanted the grafts into the normal mice. The bone marrow-derived mononuclear cells (BMMCs) improved the performance of the graft, but there was a rapid loss of green cells. The cells developed in the new vessel wall were noted to be normal. This suggests that the seeded cells promoted vessel development but they did not turn into vessel wall cells themselves.

In the second part of the study, the team tested whether the cells produced in the host's bone marrow might be a feasible source for new cells. They replaced the bone marrow cells of a female mouse with those of a male mouse before implanting the graft into a group of female mice. The new vessel was formed by cells of the female, so they did not come from the male bone marrow cells.

The final section of the study involved implanting a segment of vessel from the male attached to the scaffold into a female host. They then found that the side of the graft next to the male segment developed with male vessel wall cells while the side attached to the female host's vessel formed from female cells. This proves that the cells in the new vessel must have migrated from the adjacent normal vessel. Breuer and his colleagues demonstrated that bone marrow is not a significant source of endothelial or smooth muscle cells that comprise the neovessel and that the adjacent vessel wall is the main source of these endothelial and smooth muscle cells that form 93% of proximal neotissue.

These findings have important implications regarding fundamental mechanisms underlying neotissue formation; in this setting, the tissue-engineered construct functions by mobilizing the body's innate healing capabilities to "regenerate" neotissue from preexisting committed tissue cells.


Reference:

"New Method for Engineering Human Tissue Regeneration." Science Daily. Science Daily LLC, 13 May 2011. Web. 17 May 2011. http://www.scienceda...10512161932.htm.



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