Happy Holidays! December has been another busy month in the field of rejuvenation biotechnology. Let’s take a look at some of the things that have been happening.
SENS AMA, Winter Fundraiser, and the Pineapple Fund
Dr. Aubrey de Grey of SENS Research Foundation was on Reddit for an AMA (“ask me anything”) in the Futurology subreddit on December 7. If you’ve missed the AMA, you can still have a look at the thread here—somebody else might well have asked the same question you wanted to ask Aubrey yourself!
The great highlight of the year for SRF is that, on December 14, it received a donation of $1,000,000 by the generous, anonymous donor behind the Pineapple Fund—an organisation with a large amount of bitcoin at its disposal and planning to give it all away to charities. The entire rejuvenation community is exceedingly grateful to the mysterious donor! The world needs more people like them. And, in case you’re wondering—yes, LEAF also applied to the Pineapple Fund a couple of weeks ago.
This mind-boggling donation was added to SENS Research Foundation’s traditional Winter Fundraiser, pushing the initial goal of $250,000 all the way up to $1,250,000—of which over $1,150,000 has been reached as of the moment of writing, also thanks to almost $22,000 donated to SRF for Giving Tuesday last November. We’re pleased to announce that the $3,000 challenge fund put together by Fight Aging! has also reached and surpassed its goal. Congrats to SRF!
LEAF events in Moscow
On December 6, LEAF board member Elena Milova gave a lecture titled “How to defeat aging” in Moscow. On December 9, a small meeting with Pam Keefe (member of the advisory board of the Coalition for Radical Life Extension, co-organizer of the RAADFEST Bangkok conference, and US Transhumanist Party ambassador) was organized by Elena at the office of the Russian Transhumanist Movement (RTM). Alexey Samykin, board member of the RTM; Sergey Evfratov, head of the Digital Immortality project of the RTM and head of the KrioRus perfusion lab; co-founder of Singularity University Moscow Chapter Jin Koleshikov; and other local activists took part in this friendly discussion about the ways to promote rejuvenation technologies and innovations in general.
Project4Awesome, or P4A for short, is an initiative of the humorously named Foundation to Decrease World Suck created by Hank and John Green. Each year, the Foundation invites YouTubers to make videos to endorse their favourite charities. On the P4A website, anyone can then vote for the videos promoting the charities they like, and the most voted ones receive substantial donations from the Foundation to Decrease World Suck.
LEAF participated as well, and we’d like to thank all our supporters who made videos to promote us and voted for us! You can have a look to videos done for us here, and don’t forget to have a look at videos for SRF as well!
FA! discusses the possibility of liver organoid mass-production
We’re unable to engineer entire replacement organs to implant into patients yet; but as FA! explains here, in the case of liver and kidneys, we may be a little closer to that point than for the rest of our organs. The main difficulty lies in the fact that we don’t yet have a way to create the extensive network of capillaries needed to support most organs; however, this detail is not so important in the liver and kidneys, where our ability to engineer organoids—tiny “patches” of specific tissue—might be sufficient.
Geroscience on FOXO and neurodegeneration
In order to figure out the role of the FOXO protein in neurodegeneration, researchers have engineered mice with defects in FOXO types 1, 3 and 4, as discussed in this article. Being non-essential for development, the lack of these proteins in young mice didn’t have an impact, but it did in the case of adult mice, whose brains started being clogged with proteins that should normally be degraded. These mice improved when the researchers treated these FOXO knockout mice with rapamycin, and they also improved when they used an antioxidant instead; however, in the latter case, the results weren’t equally good.
Coming up next month
Normally, during our monthly roundup, we talk about things coming up next month; however, it being the end of the year, we are doing something a bit different. Stay tuned, because our year in review is going to be published during the holiday week!
Meanwhile, we would like to wish our readers a lovely holiday time, and we hope you enjoy the time spent with friends and family and the gifts you recieve. For us, the greatest gift is health and we are working to make that possible for everyone, regardless of their age!