As Legislators Tackle Health Reform, Scientists Discuss How to Prevent Costly Diseases of Aging at Sept. 23 Conference at Harvard

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As policymakers take to Capitol Hill to craft cost-saving health care legislation, scientists will gather near Beacon Hill at Harvard Medical School on September 23 to discuss potentially lifesaving research that has been predicted to change health care as we know it. The first ever Aging & Healthy Lifespan Conference will feature physicians, academic leaders and researchers presenting breakthrough scientific research and insights on social trends that could help patients live longer and healthier lives and save them money.

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The researchers at this conference are working to reduce the incidence of multiple diseases. The possible financial implications should be considered in the healthcare discussions.

As policymakers take to Capitol Hill to craft cost-saving health care legislation, scientists will gather near Beacon Hill at Harvard Medical School on September 23 to discuss potentially lifesaving research that has been predicted to change health care as we know it. The first ever Aging & Healthy Lifespan Conference will feature physicians, academic leaders and researchers presenting breakthrough scientific research and insights on social trends that could help patients live longer and healthier lives and save them money.

With the population over age 65 expected to double within 20 years and health care spending projected to rise by 25 percent, Americans may turn to a scientific solution to combat costly diseases of aging. The newest aging research being studied by experts presenting at the Aging & Healthy Lifespan Conference is expected to help combat age-related diseases like Alzheimer's, type-2 diabetes and cancer, ultimately helping patients to achieve healthier lifespans.

"The country is engaged in an important debate over how to reduce health care costs. Research focused on aging and aging processes has the potential to improve public health to a far greater extent much less expensively than science that examines only one disease at a time," said conference speaker Stephanie Lederman, Executive Director of the American Federation for Aging Research, also a conference sponsor. "The researchers at this conference are working to reduce the incidence of multiple diseases. The possible financial implications should be considered in the healthcare discussions."

The conference's agenda features more than 20 experts, who have been described as mavericks and pioneers in the field of aging research, including:

  •     David Ewing Duncan, award-winning journalist and best-selling author of seven books, including The Experimental Man, a Chief Correspondent for public radio's "Biotech Nation," a longtime commentator for NPR's "Morning Edition," and the Director of the Center for Life Science Policy and a Visiting Researcher at the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkley.
  •     Leonard Guarente, Ph.D., Novartis Professor of Biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and researcher credited with the discovery of the biochemical activities of sirtuins that have the potential to combat diseases of aging;
  •     Cynthia Kenyon, Ph.D., Director of Hillblom Center for the Biology of Aging, University of California, San Francisco, who first discovered that genetic dissection influences aging;
  •     Michael F. Roizen, M.D., Co-Founder of RealAge and award-winning, #1 New York Times bestselling author and co-author of five books in the RealAge series, including RealAge: Are You as Young as You Can Be? and YOU: The Owner's Manual: An Insider's Guide to the Body that Will Make You Healthier and Younger, co-authored with Dr. Mehmet Oz.
  •     David Sinclair, Ph.D., Sirtris Co-Founder, Scientific Advisory Board Co-Chair and Associate Professor of Pathology at Harvard Medical School and key contributor to the scientific understanding of aging;
  •     Christoph Westphal, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer, Sirtris, a GSK Company and Senior Vice President, Centre of Excellence for External Drug Discovery, GSK. Sirtris is focused on discovering and developing drugs to treat diseases of aging.

Speakers at the Aging & Healthy Lifespan Conference, which is open to the public, will present emerging research into scientific and medical advances in aging, as well as lifestyle and demographic trends on two speaker tracks. One track will focus on new research and insights in the science of aging including updates on the science behind sirtuins and resveratrol, the key ingredient in red wine that researchers believe has the power to slow symptoms of aging. The second track will feature emerging social trends in lifestyles, behaviors and activities of the aging population.

The conference will also feature insight from leading research and advocacy associations, such as the American Federation for Aging Research (AFAR), which has been on the forefront of revolutionary approaches to the science of healthier aging for the past 28 years.

The Aging & Healthy Lifespan Conference is sponsored by Pure Communications, the American Federation for Aging Research and Merriman Curhan Ford. Registration is now open for the conference, which will be held on Wednesday, Sept. 23 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the Joseph B. Martin Conference Center in Harvard Medical School. Guests can learn more about the conference or register online by visiting, http://www.healthylifespanconference.com .

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