Reporter was commissioned to write this in-depth article
When it comes to age-related illness, the direction of modern medicine seems more reactive than proactive. In other words, what type of research is being done topreventconditions like Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes from happening in the first place?
Enter people likeJason Hope, an Arizona-based Internet entrepreneur who’s using his money and influence to advance anti-aging initiatives. Much of Hope’sphilanthropyefforts are concentrated on theSENS Foundation, a non-profit formed in 2009 to tackle age-related disease head on. Since its inception, SENS has been a driving force in what’s known as rejuvenation biotechnology. This line of research focuses specifically on addressing age-related disease.
Hope’s involvement with SENS began in 2010, when he donated half a million dollars to the organization. Because of these funds, the group was able to establish its Cambridge SENS laboratory and implement new research initiatives. Since then, he’s gone on to contribute over $1 million of his own money to the cause.
“I’m invested in the SENS Foundation for a number of reasons,” said Hope. “In simplest terms, I believe in their work and understand how essential it is in terms of advancing human medicine. It has the power to completely redefine the healthcare, pharmaceutical and biotech industries.”
In addition to lending his financial support to SENS, Hope also plays an active role in the group’s outreach efforts.
According to Hope, rejuvenation biotechnologies represent the future of human health. This approach to anti-aging is geared less toward treating diseases, and more toward understanding prevention as a way to create a longer, better quality of life. Over time, normal metabolism gradually damages the body. This, in turn, leads to the ravaging diseases associated with old age. To combat this, the SENS approach specifically works to repair this kind of damagebeforethe body develops deadly pathologies.
With regard to investing in healthy aging, Hope doesn’t stand alone. In fact, more and more of the nation’s wealthiest innovators are putting millions toward anti-aging. (The world is still in atizzyoverCalico, a new Google business also aimed at extending human life.) Billionaire Peter Thiel, perhaps best known for co-founding PayPal, has also contributed sizable funds to the SENS Foundation over the years. Back in 2006, Thiel made an opening donation of $3.5 million to help fund the organization’s pilot research projects.
The trailblazing mind behind the SENS Foundation is its chief science officer Aubrey de Grey, Ph.D., a renowned researcher on aging. de Grey’s provocative ideas have challenged the way the scientific community regards the aging process. TheTED speakereven believes that the first people who will live to 1,000 years have already been born.
“I hope that my support can help bring about faster results that will benefit the human race as a whole,” said Hope.
An Arizona native, inventor, business consultant and futurist, Hope is passionate about getting behind the organizations that stand out to him. He has a philanthropic passion for scientific research, disease cure and education. For him, giving back to the community goes hand in hand with his professional success.