Jamie Metzl at SXSW 2018

Get Up To Speed on Life Extension

Jamie Metzl makes you smarter about the science of longevity research.

In his 2016 novel Eternal Sonata, Jamie Metzl described a near future in which scientists are reversing aging with stem cell treatments and the DNA of jellyfish.

It’s science fiction, but the science is not quite fictional. When it comes to understanding how advances in biomedicine and genetics are converging in longevity research, Metzl—a polymath who has held positions in international affairs in the U.S. government and for the United Nations—does his homework.

You can benefit from that by checking out the talk he gave at SXSW in March. Metzl offers a handy primer on the most promising threads in longevity science and spins an engaging story along the way, ranging from the Epic of Gilgamesh to a 19th century fad for testicular transplants.

Grand as this tale is, the quest to increase human “health span” and life span is just part of an even bigger story. As Metzl puts it: “After 3.8 billion years of evolution, by the principles that we all learned a long time ago—the Darwinian principles of random mutation and natural selection—we are turning a corner in our evolutionary trajectory as a species, moving toward a future where we will increasingly direct our own evolutionary process.”

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