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Time flies: Register today for the third geroscience summit!

Felipe Sierra
Felipe SIERRA,
Division Director,
Division of Aging Biology (DAB)
.

In aging, as well as in the study of aging, it’s true that time flies. It’s exciting to witness the new field of geroscience emerging in the 6 short years since our first summit. Believe it or not, NIA’s third Geroscience Summit is coming up November 4-5 to provide further evidence of this maturing field. We hope you are excited as we are and ready to register to attend!

The first meeting in 2013 was aimed at introducing the principles of geroscience, namely that aging is the major risk factor for chronic diseases and disabilities. The geroscience approach suggests we will be able to attack a broad range of aging-related diseases and conditions simultaneously. The second summit in 2016 at the New York Academy of Sciences addressed the converse: how some diseases and/or their treatments lead to acceleration of aging.

This third meeting, like the previous two, is organized by a diverse cadre of scientists from more than 20 NIH Institutes, Centers and Offices who form the trans-NIH Geroscience Interest Group (GSIG). As this is a trans-NIH effort, the first summit commenced with remarks from NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins, and he has graciously agreed to open this third summit as well.

While the concept of geroscience has been well accepted by the aging-biology research community, we are now attempting to extend our reach into new areas of scientific endeavor and to involve new participants, including disease advocates and policymakers. Because we are going to focus on specific chronic diseases, rather than the basic principles behind geroscience, the third summit is titled Targeting Chronic Diseases Through Geroscience.

A different focus for this summit

November’s summit will have a slightly different flavor than past meetings. Some speakers will be academic scientists who are well versed in geroscience concepts. They will cover the cornerstones of the field, as well as advances in basic biology and their translation to the clinic.

In addition, we will hear from representatives of disease-focused professional societies and foundations. They will explore the links among their individual diseases of interest and aging biology.

We hope this approach emphasizes the central role of aging as a major factor in causing certain diseases and the potential benefits of geroscience approaches to treat those diseases. We also expect to identify ways in which professional organizations and foundations can incorporate age and aging research into their portfolios and outreach activities.

We are humbled by the swell of interest in geroscience evident not only in this country but across much of the world. The NIA summit is a key part of this effort. We hope you will attend this exciting event! If you are new to geroscience or need a refresher on the field ahead of the Summit, you can view video of my recent webinar “What is Geroscience? The Complex Interplay Between Aging and Disease” online.

Register now to be part of the action!

The summit will take place on the NIH campus in Bethesda, MD, November 4–5, 2019. Admission is free, but registration by October 28 is required. If you have questions or comments, please leave them below.

Comments

Submitted by Leonard - Hayflick on September 18, 2019

You write "... the principles of geroscience, namely that aging is the major risk factor for chronic diseases and disabilities." If you really believe this, then why are you and the NIA not emphasizing research on the fundamental biology of aging at the molecular level or the etiology of aging? How does "geroscience" differ from biogerontology?

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