Aging research is research aimed at slowing down the aging process or at repairing the damage caused by it. At present, comparatively few resources are spent on aging research, relative to the benefits that breakthroughs in this area could bring about. For example, in 2019 the National Institutes of Health spent less than two percent of its budget on aging.
There is some disagreement concerning the best way to make progress on aging. Some researchers claim that progress depends crucially on improving our knowledge of the metabolic pathways involved in the aging process—this is the approach favored by most research institutions. An alternative approach seeks to find ways to periodically repair the cellular and molecular damage caused by aging, without necessarily understanding the aging process itself. The SENS Research Foundation, an organization explicitly set up with the aim of ultimately ending aging, has pioneered this alternative approach.
Barnett, Matthew (2020) Effects of anti-aging research on the long-term future, Effective Altruism Forum, February 27.
Beckstead, Nick (2017) Mechanisms of Aging, Open Philanthropy, September.
National Institutes of Health (2020) Estimates of funding for various research, condition, and disease categories (RCDC), February 24.
De Grey, Aubrey & Michael Rae (2007) Ending Aging: The Rejuvenation Breakthroughs That Could Reverse Human Aging in Our Lifetime, New York: St. Martin’s Press.