Q & A Discussion Summary
Sergey speaks about his book, Growing Young, which covers different technologies and discoveries on the near horizon. He believes that it is unlikely that a single intervention will create the change necessary, so he is building a portfolio of different technologies to target aging. His organization is also focused on new players in the industry. His goals are to increase the affordability and disruption of the current state of healthcare. Gene editing and regenerative medicine (organ regeneration) will likely pave the way. They focus on Series B rounds of investment.
Neil Littman discusses his experience at the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine where he saw a girl cured of combined immunodeficiency disorder using gene therapy. He started Bioverge to democratize these treatments and allow people to invest in these types of solutions directly. Neil focuses on pre-seed and series A. He believes in “tech bio”, a new wave of companies that apply technology to solve fundamental problems in healthcare.
- Altering regulation would help drug discovery
- Infrastructural ideas are more investable
- Platforms which can spit out a lot of assets are more interesting than single ideas
- Longevity is still an orphan for big industries
- Medium pharma are starting to approach Sergey’s fund for advice
- Some technologies will be expensive in the beginning, but within a few years the prices will come down exponentially
- For investments, make sure you have a broad portfolio
- Invest in what you know
- CAR-T therapies catalyzed pharma to invest in gene therapy
- We’ve done a terrible job in the past to communicate our value proposition to the world – people think about lifespan but not healthspan. A focus on centenarians may have contributed to this.
- Venture philanthropy has emerged as a hybrid model for funding aging
- FDA approval is important, if data comes from outside the country it should adhere to FDA standards.
- What we define as healthcare has changed significantly over the years
- Although Neil and Sergey do not currently participate in politics, it is important for shifting legislation and culture to make it easier to get data, promote longevity oriented behaviors, and establish blue zones.
- Alliance for Longevity Initiatives is a policy group which promotes longevity
- To connect, go to sergeyyoung.com or www.bioverse.com