Today, let us consider what happens when a new area of medical development arises, attracts a great deal of research funding, and then and one or more companies raise even larger amounts of venture funding to take the first therapies to the clinic. This is the case for senolytics, the development of therapies – mostly pharmaceuticals – that can selectively destroy senescent cells. Good evidence for these cells to be a root cause of aging has existed for decades, but it wasn’t until 2011 that research and scientific funding institutions were presented with animal study data that they couldn’t continue to ignore. The years since have been a steady avalanche of ever more funding, evidence to link senescent cells to specific age-related conditions, and demonstrations of reversal of aspects of aging in mice through clearance of senescent cells.
What happens is that people take notice. Any group able to write a credible grant proposal in the aging research community has probably by now written several on the topic of cellular senescence. Grant writing follows the state of funding, and all academic organizations tend to steer themselves towards the better
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