-- Shakespeare, The Passionate Pilgrim
A new and dramatic chapter in the war on aging will be written, December 4-6, 1994 in Las Vegas, Nevada, with an historic assembly of many of the world's leading physicians and scientists at the 2nd annual conference of the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine (Academy).
With 500-1,000 practicing physicians, health care professionals, and members of the media expected to attend, this gathering is a landmark event in the progression of anti-aging medicine as a mainstream clinical science.
Because the conference is open to the public, it provides an ideal opportunity for a lay audience to learn about the ground breaking work being done in this exciting field. Anti-aging medicine comprises a wide array of disciplines, ranging from basic life extension therapies, to cosmetic surgery, to innovative biotechnology, many of which have had and continue to have an immediate impact on daily life.
Since its inception in 1993, the Academy has swiftly advanced to the front lines of the longevity movement. The Academy's nonprofit society of physicians and scientists is the first professional medical organization to recognize the phenomenon of aging as a treatable condition rather than an inevitable reality of human existence. Proceeding from this fundamental doctrine, the Academy has actively pursued its agenda of promoting anti-aging research and developing technologies that extend and enhance human life. Among its many projects is a plan to establish an official regulatory body responsible for certifying medical specialists in longevity medicine.
The Academy is collaborating with the American Longevity Research Institute to create an anti-aging "biomarkers" clinical testing program. Biomarkers are measurable biochemical factors that can indicate age-related or pathological changes in the body. The program seeks to supply physicians with a computerized diagnostic tool to aid in designing longevity treatment protocols.
Having recently applied for participation in the National Practitioner Data Bank, the Academy is currently lobbying the National Library of Medicine to designate anti-aging medicine as a major reference classification. This step would greatly benefit researchers by collecting longevity literature under a single heading in the principal medical data bases (i.e., Indices Medicus, Medline, etc.).
Organizing a professional conference specifically for the emerging clinical field of anti-aging medicine is consistent with the Academy's goal of coordinating vital research and supplying a forum for specialists to exchange ideas. The inaugural anti-aging symposium held in November 1993 in Cancun, Mexico, focused on recent advances in applied longevity interventions: antioxidant therapy, neuroendocrine regimens, stress reduction programs, and hormone treatment. Aside from offering participants a critical opportunity to present and compare research, this first meeting reinforced the general sentiment that anti-aging medicine was rapidly becoming one of the most exciting areas of medical research and treatment. More importantly, it galvanized the anti-aging medical community, uniting its members in the conviction that the mystery surrounding aging can indeed be resolved.
Judging by the large number of health professionals who plan to attend the Las Vegas conference, this pioneer spirit of excitement and determination has not merely carried over from last year, but has intensified. Support from special patron Louis Habash and corporate sponsors has allowed the Academy to organize the largest anti-aging conference ever. Two key sponsors, the University of Arizona College of Medicine and Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine, are offering 15 hours of continuing medical education credits. Continuing education credits are being sought for chiropractors.
Interest in the conference has been magnified by the distinguished roster of longevity and preventive medicine experts scheduled to speak: Dr. Roy Walford, clinician, research scientist (UCLA Medical School), and chief of medical operations for Biosphere 2. He was named a delegate to the White House Conference on Aging; Richard Cutler, PhD, internationally recognized research chemist at the Gerontology Research Center, National Institute on Aging, and specialist in the genetic and biochemical basis of human longevity; Dr. Arthur Balin, noted clinician, author, and editor of the newsletter Health and Healing, president of the American Preventative Medical Assoc., and medical director of the Whitaker Wellness Center; and Dr. Ronald Klatz founder and president of the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine, senior medical editor for Longevity magazine, leading authority in preventive/longevity medicine and maximum human performance.
Joining these speakers at the conference are a number of other prominent health professionals presenting a wide range of longevity topics: promising therapies for cancer, cardiovascular diseases, Alzheimer's, arthritis, and Parkinson's disease; life and the "ageless society"; demographics of aging, life insurance and the recalculation of mortality tables; retirement and life-style issues; biotechnology and medical treatment; advances in microsurgery; genetic therapy; cardiovascular procedures; and biomarkers in diagnosis and treatment.
Other scheduled activities include a symposium on the realities of practicing anti-aging medicine (featuring eight practicing physicians); a symposium on the role of biotechnology in longevity medicine; a panel discussion on common characteristics among centenarians; and poster sessions where clinicians and scientists will give visual presentations based on previously unpublished clinical research. A commercial exhibit will feature state-of-the-art medical and biomedical technologies and provide educational materials on longevity. Finally, a time capsule commemorating the conference will ceremoniously be installed on the resort's grounds. It will contain a written and video recording of the event, and attendees may insert self-addressed messages that will be mailed back to them at the capsule's opening in 50 years. Conference participants will have an opportunity to meet and to socialize with lecturers at the opening night reception, daily luncheons and socials, and an awards banquet to honor contributors to longevity science.
Conference organizers say media coverage is expected to be extensive. Television networks that have expressed interest in producing segments on the meeting reportedly include the BBC, ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, CBN, CNBC, ESPN, and HSN. Print media such as the London Observer, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, OMNI magazine, and Prevention magazine have also expressed interest in covering the event.
The aim of longevity medicine can be distilled to a deceptively straightforward mission: to add years to life and life to years. This lofty goal, drawing on wide and sometimes disparate spheres of scientific knowledge, is daunting in complexity and monumental in scope. The enigma, the most intractable in human history, has confounded our best minds: Why do we age? Though the solution is not yet within our grasp, this conference is an essential step on the road to answering this fundamental question.
For more information on the conference, contact:
American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine
P.O. Box 146571
Chicago, IL 60614-2013
Tele: (312) 975-4034
Fax: (312) 929-5733