immortality as an engineering problem

Excelife excelife at earthlink.net
Sun Jul 19 08:39:16 EST 1998

In article <35B08D73.104E9213 at nospam.com>, james at nospam.com says...
>> The citation we did make was for DR.Carol Greider (Current Biology 1998,
>> 8:R178-R181) wherin she dicusses the role of hTERT, a subunit of human
>> telomerase and its effectiveness in allowing cells to live beyond their
>> normal senescence. Dr Greider a lead researcher at Cold Springs Harbor
>> Laboratory. A Laboratory, I might say, with an impeccable reputation.  Dr.
>> Greider herself has been appointed by Presdident Clinton to the National
>> Bio-ethics Board. Hardly a likely candidate for the conspiracy theories
>> you've concocted.
>That's a bit of an inaccurate way to put it.  Did I say that that was what
>happened?  Nope.  Is it even likely?  I don't have enough information to
>determine that.  What I have done is point out what are, in my mind,
>inconcistencies if you assume that Geron's paper is correct.
>> >2)  There are a couple possible explanations for the back-to-back
>> publication of
>> >these papers.  One is coincidence (which strikes me as unlikely - see 
>> The
>> >other is that the two groups were working together and planned to publish
>> the
>> >papers in this fashion , so that both could refer to the other for 
>>  Is
>> >this really what happened?  I have no idea, but it is certainly possible.
>> >
>> Unsupported inuendo is unlike you James.  As a scientist you usually base
>> your opinions on facts not conjecture.
>Unsupported?  Well, the papers did come out within a month of each other.  
>Geron has been known to put an overly optimistic spin on their research.  
>they have also been known to withhold information that would have been very
>salient to the scientific community, but which would have hurt their stock 
>(for example - long before they told anyone about it they knew that some 
lines of
>cancer cells didn't need telomerase activity to proliferate, but they didn't 
>anything because that makes their work along anti-cancer lines seem less 
>to work).  And all the other things I mentioned...
>So my statements are not "unsupported" at all.  You can decide you don't 
like my
>evidence - but nonetheless my statements are not unsupported.  And I admit 
>it is all as circumstantial as it comes - and I have admitted that at every 
>of the way during these posts.  But that doesn't mean that the matters 
should be
>ignored and you should just accept the Geron paper as gospel.  On the 
contrary, I
>think the "scientific" thing to do (since you imply that I am not being so) 
>to remain skeptical until further experiments have been conducted.  Isn't
>skepticism the general basis for scientific review and debate as we know it? 
>not sure why you and Aubrey are so willing to accept this work as legitimate 
>further verification (though I do admit that I did not know who Dr. Carol 
>was, and I think her credentials lend significant weight to this matter in 
>of Geron).  I had been under the impression (because of a comment you made 
to me
>in some private email) that the work had been repeated by a relatively 
>Canadian lab.
>In summary, I still hope that Geron's paper proves correct.  But I do not 
>the evidence yet justifies considering the SCIENCE paper to be dogma.  Since
>there are a variety of people posting messages to the effect of "Geron has 
>the problem of aging and we'll all be immortal with a little more work" I 
felt it
>my duty to point out possible flaws in these overzealous statements.

First, I wish to apologize to Aubrey de Grey.  I mispelled HIS name, put HIM 
at the wrong University and and changed HIS gender.  To set the record 
straight Aubrey de Grey is associated with the Dept. of Genetics at Cambridge 
University, ("the original one, in England").  He has provided myself and 
Lifeline Laboratories with some valuable ideas on how he thinks aging 
research should proceed.

The mistakes listed above were my fault for not proof-reading my posts.

Thomas Mahoney

I also wanted to update the status of Dr. Carol Greider who has left Cold 
Springs Harbor Laboratory for the not unsubstantial facillities at John 
Hopkins University. 

Now to James;  Despite how it may appear to you I am no great fan of Geron 
Corp. or any of the other "private" laboratories or pharmaceutical 
companies.(As opposed to "public" Universities and Gov't. labs.)

If you have visited our web site you will know that I think these 
Corporations are going to try to control the results of the aging research I 
have been talking about, for their own excessive profits and private benefit.

No, I'm not some conspiracy nut who thinks "they're" out to get us.  But I do 
think it's the nature of the beast!  Under our economic and political systems 
it is money and power that make the decisions effecting our lives.  Whoever 
is able to gain control of the results of this research not only is going to 
make a little bit of money but will literally have the power over life and 

Now if the process developed is easily replicated and amenable to mass 
production then we'll only be gouged for money. But if it's an involved 
procedure requiring extensive laboratory work,specialized equiptment or 
individual medical intervention, to name just a few possibilities, then there 
is aslo going to be both a supply and an access problem.  Do you want Geron 
Corp. deciding who's going to get the procedure and who isn't?

But I really shouldn't be picking on Geron Corp. Actually they are one of the 
better Companies out there.  They are willing to do collabrative studies with 
Universities and researchers throughout the nation and they have published 
the results of their work in SCIENCE.  Geron's openess has resulted in our 
discussions of their research, pro and con, and we can each make informed 
interpretations of the direction the research into telomeres is headed.

In some of my posts I have raised questions regarding tranforming growth 
factor beta2,(TGF), and it's effects on the longevity of epidermal cells.  
The responses, (save one), I have received have been a deafening silence.  No 
one out there seems to know about this research or it's implications.  Why 
not you ask!  Well it seems that Genzyme Corp. who has this product in phase 
2 clinical trials hasn't published a damn thing about it!

Genzyme Corp. is treating this research as propriatary information and 
refuses to discuss specifics.  They have applied for patents on parts of the 
procedure and the information on the clinical trials is "public information" 
so if you knew what you were looking for and had the time and the resources 
to follow through you might get an inkling of what they're up to.

If the peptide TGF is involved in age related genetic expresssion, as it 
appears to be, then this research could dovetail with the investigations into 
telomeres and become a necessary component in the search for longevity. But 
if the research runs into a Genzyme Patent..... 

But I talk too long.

More to follow!

Thomas Mahoney
Lifeline Laboratories, Inc.



More information about the Ageing mailing list

Send comments to us at biosci-help [At] net.bio.net