Mprize for Rejuvenation nears 3 million dollars
2005-11-03
Posted on : 2005-11-03 23:10:13 by Admin
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LORTON, VA NOV 3, 2005
To the delight of the volunteers at the Methuselah Foundation, an anonymous donor has given $1 million to the Methuselah Mouse Prize, or Mprize for Rejuvenation, the scientific research prize aimed at bringing an end to the degenerations and indignities of aging. Volunteers for the Mprize couldn't believe it when they saw the size of the latest check: topping previous and exceedingly generous five- and six-figure donations, this was a check for $1 million out of the blue!

We stand within reach of a cure for human aging according to trailblazing biomedical gerontologist Aubrey de Grey of Cambridge University, Chairman and Chief Science Officer of the Methuselah Foundation. Like de Grey, more and more are convinced of the power prizes have shown to make a difference to the future of healthy and longevity and are putting their money where their hopes are!

Over the past several years, a growing band of enthusiasts - regular folk from all corners of the world have donated to the Mprize, a scientific research prize modeled on the extraordinarily successful prizes such as the Longitude Prize and the X Prize. The Mprize, or Methuselah Mouse Prize, rewards scientists who increase the maximum healthy lifespan by rejuvenating mice that are already in late middle age.

In early 2005, the Mprize hit its first million-dollar mark in pledges, entirely made up of small donations from people in more than 18 countries around the world. Today's anonymous donation will push the Mprize fund to nearly 3 million dollars.

The anonymous $1 million donor cited an initial skepticism and then a growing understanding of the real possibility of curing aging in our lifetimes as his reason for making such a tremendous investment. He first learned about de Grey's work from the popular press. The donor then learned more by following the Fight Aging! blog (http://www.fightaging.org) and the online newsletter Longevity Meme (http://www.longevitymeme.org). Both sites explore the coming reality of life extension and how we are likely to achieve it. These blogs advocate de Grey's work and the Mprize in particular. In the Mprize, this donor saw a popular movement in the making, where every dollar in the prize fund represents a powerful voice, calling for the scientific community to take audacious yet practical steps towards real, working anti-aging medicine.

Why didn't he tell us his name? Like many who have donated, including the originator of a $125,000 grant donated earlier this year, he didn't want to become the news story. He wanted to make sure that the message was: End aging as we know it? A million times - Yes! The Mprize is an all-volunteer effort. All donations go directly into the Prize fund -- there is no overhead. This December, Mprize Three Hundred Members, the group of donors who commit to giving $1000 per year for 25 years, plan to celebrate the recent growth of the prize with a Three Hundred member dinner where the speakers will be Aubrey de Grey and Mprize donor Ray Kurzweil, author of The Singularity is Near