Re: [GRG] Kidney donor ages…

Dear Harold,

This is good to know. I suspect that aging is considerably more complex than pro- and anti-aging molecules circulating in the plasma, though I agree that these appear to be very powerful factors and should be pursued aggressively. I also believe that their optimum application will likely result both in significant rejuvenation and significant extension of the lifespan. Certainly it is pretty clear that the Hayflick limit and the conventional wear and tear theories of aging are, to a great extent, an artifact of programmed senescence and that understanding the mechanics of this process should be the focus of anti-aging research. 

An even higher priority is to do small-scale, very-rapid-turn around research to determine the applicability of these current discoveries to humans quickly – in months to years, rather than decades. The Conboys, and others in academia, will no doubt continue to make progress in unraveling the molecular mechanics of aging and rejuvenation. However, even now, there are three putative rejuvenatory molecules whose structure is known. What should be happening now, as I write this, is that efforts should be underway on the following fronts: 

1) Competent and demonstrably rapid results efforts to achieve affordable intermediate level production of these species should be underway. This could be achieved by any of several means which are not mutually exclusive, such as small scale high yield production in a de novo lab(s), contract production with existing protein production firms in the West, or contract production with protein production companies or pharmaceutical concerns in China.

2) The creation of an animal research facility capable of applying these molecules and of investigating their combination with pheresis in both rat and dog models. Dogs are almost essential for this work, because there are large populations of already old, genetically heterogenous animals readily available for experimentation. Uniquely, old dogs can be recruited from the community for clinical trials in much the same way as humans are. Additionally, there are many aged dogs available for experimentation using conventional approaches. The genetic heterogeneity of dogs, their divers environmental history and their variable breed and size “specific” aging rate make them ideal for this work. Another powerful factor favoring their use is that their size and physiology make vascular access, physiological monitoring, veterinary medical imaging and general veterinary management and care compatible with the same equipment used for these applications in humans. Additionally, there is a vast reservoir of veterinary expertise and literature in both the specific pathologies that affect this species, as well as their clinical course in normal, healthy aging. Perhaps of similar importance is that a significant fraction of aging dogs experience an AD-like brain wasting disease with a clinical course that is strikingly similar to that of humans. Dogs also experience a normal cerebral atrophy of aging which closely mirrors that seen in aging humans.

Identification of facilities to synthesize anti-aging proteins, as well as their synthesis and initial vetting for purity and activity, will likely take on the order of 12 to 18 months, under the most optimistic circumstances; with the proviso that funding for the effort is available. Similarly, the creation of purchase of an existing animal research facility with the necessary capabilities and infrastructure will require a similar period of time. 

I have considered the possibility of using a contract animal research facility and rejected it for numerous reasons. First, both the general insights and the clinical details of immediate application of the research to humans will literally be lost in translation with contract facilities. These entities will have neither the interest, nor the ability to translate new research findings to humans; and the art of immediate clinical application lies in conducting the animal research with the practicality of human application always in mind and at the forefront of the design and execution of the experimental work. Second, contract work is rigidly defined, inflexible, and always at arms-length from the needs and goals of those who commissioned it. The results of such work are often useless for the ultimate purpose, or require much additional and costly research to refine and adapt for human application. What is needed is an integrated bench to bedside approach.

If these organizational and very practical efforts are not launched soon, then clinical application of these emerging insights will not be 5-7 years ahead, but rather will come decades from now which is unarguably too late for most of us here.

Mike Darwin

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About Johnny Adams

My full-time commitment is to slow and ultimately reverse age related functional decline to increase healthy years of life. I’ve been active in this area since the 1970s, steadily building skills and accomplishments. I have a good basic understanding of the science of aging, and have many skills that complement those of scientists so they can focus on science to advance our shared mission. Broad experience Top skills: administration, management, information technology (data and programming), communications, writing, marketing, market research and analysis, public speaking, forging ethical win-win outcomes among stakeholders (i.e. high level "selling"). Knowledge in grant writing, fundraising, finance. Like most skilled professionals, I’m best described as a guy who defines an end point, then figures out how to get there. I enjoy the conception, design, execution and successful completion of a grand plan. Executive Director Gerontology Research Group (GRG). Manages Email discussion forum, web site, meetings and oversees supercentenarian (oldest humans, 110+ years) research. CEO / Executive Director Carl I. Bourhenne Medical Research Foundation (Aging Intervention Foundation), an IRS approved 501(c)(3) nonprofit. http://www.AgingIntervention.org Early contributor to Supercentenarian Research Foundation. Co-Founder Geroscience Healthspan Forum. Active contributor to numerous initiatives to increase healthy years of life. Co-authored book on conventional, practical methods available today to slow the processes of aging – nutrition, exercise, behavior modification and motivation, stress reduction, proper supplementation, damage caused by improper programs, risk reduction and others. Fundamental understanding of, and experience in the genomics of longevity (internship analyzing and curating longevity gene papers). Biological and technical includes information technology, software development and computer programming, bioinformatics and protein informatics, online education, training programs, regulatory, clinical trials software, medical devices (CAT scanners and related), hospital electrical equipment testing program. Interpersonal skills – good communication, honest, well liked, works well in teams or alone. Real world experience collaborating in interdisciplinary teams in fast paced organizations. Uses technology to advance our shared mission. Education: MBA 1985 University of Southern California -- Deans List, Albert Quon Community Service Award (for volunteering with the American Longevity Association and helping an elderly lady every other week), George S. May Scholarship, CA State Fellowship. BA psychology, psychobiology emphasis 1983 California State University Fullerton Physiological courses as well as core courses (developmental, abnormal etc). UCLA Psychobiology 1978, one brief but fast moving and fulfilling quarter. Main interest was the electrochemical basis of consciousness. Also seminars at the NeuroPsychiatric Institute. Other: Ongoing conferences, meetings and continuing education. Aging, computer software and information technology. Some molecular biology, biotech, bio and protein informatics, computer aided drug design, clinical medical devices, electronics, HIPAA, fundraising through the Assoc. of Fundraising Professionals. Previous careers include: Marketing Increasing skill set and successes in virtually all phases, with valuable experience in locating people and companies with the greatest need and interest in a product or service, and sitting across the table with decision makers and working out agreements favorable to all. Information Technology: Management, data analysis and programming in commercial and clinical trials systems, and bioinformatics and protein informatics. As IT Director at Newport Beach, CA based technology organization Success Family of Continuing Education Companies, provided online software solutions for insurance and financial professionals in small to Fortune 500 size companies. We were successful with lean team organization (the slower moving competition was unable to create similar software systems). Medical devices: At Omnimedical in Paramount CA developed and managed quality assurance dept. and training depts. for engineers, physicians and technicians. Designed hospital equipment testing program for hospital services division. In my early 20’s I was a musician, and studied psychology and music. Interned with the intention of becoming a music therapist. These experiences helped develop valuable skills used today to advance our shared mission of creating aging solutions.
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