Over the last few months, the SENS Foundation Academic Initiative has witnessed a rapid increase in its membership numbers, and in the interest it receives from students across the United States and the world. In order to properly utilize and expand upon this interest, the Initiative will need new volunteers, new ideas, and new projects.
Peter Schapira, an on-site intern at the SENS Foundation Research Center, has spent the last month working on his own project with funding from a $2400 Academic Initiative grant.
It's with great pleasure that I announce the release of our Annual Report for 2011. The report includes updates on all of our research projects, both at the Research Center in Mountain View, and at leading universities and institutions around the world. It reviews the success of SENS 5 and the expansion of our Academic Initiative, and summarises our financial situation through 2011.
A literature review written by Academic Initiative members Adiv Johnson, Kemal Akman, Stuart Calimport, and Daniel Wuttke, with oversight and assistance from two professors who will be listed as co-authors, has been accepted for publication by Rejuvenation Research.
UCLA Researchers have exploited a recently-discovered mammalian system for the mitochondrial import of nuclear-encoded RNA to import, express, and demonstrate functional protein translation from engineered mRNA and tRNA constructs. They used this system, with modifications for mitochondrial targeting and orthotopic translation, to rescue respiration in human mitochondriopathy cells. While further characterization and extension is clearly needed, this approach appears offer great promise for the correction of age-related mitochondrial DNA mutations.
Last month, the Academic Initiative took an early and important step towards the completion of its first online course: we held our first filming, recording a lecture by Dr. Judith Campisi. This will be the first of nine guest lectures we get on video, each of which will be delivered by a well-known and experienced scientist. When we have completed the course, we will make all of the lectures freely available on our website.