What is the Mprize?
The Mprize competition is an exciting and viable mid-term strategy to deliver on the Methuselah Foundation's mission of extending healthy human life. It directly accelerates the development of revolutionary new life extension therapies by awarding two cash prizes: one to the research team that breaks the world record for the oldest-ever mouse; and one to the team that develops the most successful late-onset rejuvenation. Previous winners have already proven that healthy life can be extended; each new winner pushes the outer limits of healthy life back even further...and each new winner takes us even further.
A well-designed prize is the ONLY method that has shown to be 100% successful in turning the impossible into a near-term reality. Prizes make this kind of ground-breaking change achievable by:
By throwing out all previous assumptions about aging and offering scientists and researchers a huge (and ever-increasing!) cash prize incentive, the Mprize is guaranteed to create revolutionary solutions...quite possibly within our lifetimes.
Mice are genetically similar to humans. They are small and inexpensive to maintain so studying large quantities is feasible. Their short lifespan, about three years, makes it possible to see if interventions result in longer, healthier lives – all in time to be of benefit to our own lives.
Mice are widely considered to be the prime model of inherited human disease and studies have shown that mice share 99% of their genes with humans. The similarities between sections of human and mouse DNA allow researchers working with mouse genes to make incredibly accurate predictions about the location and function of their human counterparts. Mice have been the mainstay of laboratory research on human illness and longevity.
The species Mus musculus is used in the laboratory for experimental work, including the biology of aging. Their long history of captivity has resulted in strong selection for rapid growth and breeding and has resulted in a wide variation in lifespan between different (inbred) laboratory strains. Most useful studies of lifespan are done on strains with a relatively long lifespan. The one most often used is "C57Bl/6", which normally lives about three years without any life-extending intervention.
What You Can Do
What do the end of famine, the discovery of longitude, and private space travel have in common? Each of these world-changing innovations was created by an inventor seeking to win a prize. The Mprize is a multi-million dollar prize to end the diseases of aging. Right now, brilliant minds all around the world are competing for this prize. Your support will help them get there faster.
Competitor Alan Cash
The focus of Mr. Cash's research and development at Terra Biological LLC is on small molecules that simulate the genomic effects of caloric restriction ("caloric restriction mimics" or "CR mimetics"). CR mimetics have been shown to increase the lifespan of laboratory test animals, namely C. Elegans worms, D. Melanogater flies and, in a small pilot test, M. Musculus mice by up to 36%.
Mr. Cash is an entrepreneur with formal training in physics and geology, who has studied the biological and biochemical aspects of aging research with scientists in the field. He is working with the National Institutes of Aging Division of the US National Institutes of Health and also investing his own funds in this research. The NIA/NIH is currently evaluating the inclusion of one of Terra Biological's CR mimetics in its ITP test program in mice to measure its biological effects on life and health span. These larger scale mouse tests will constitute the entry into the Mprize competition.