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‘Silver Tsunami’ -- A Frightening Vision of the Future

Here’s something Aging News Alert’s readers should take time to check out. Filmmaker Cynthia Harrison’s new documentary short film, “Silver Tsunami, reminds us that Baby Boomers -- those born between 1946-1964 -- represent the largest generation ever born, and they’re turning 65 every 8 seconds. That’s 10,000 per day, 4 million per year. It is estimated that by 2030, there will be more than 70 million seniors in the United States alone. 

Indeed, the “Silver Tsunami” Harrison describes in her film is a devastating, worldwide crisis, underscored by a multitude of diseases, costly healthcare, continuing cuts in research funding, and an aging population explosion.

In her directorial debut, veteran Emmy-nominated writer/producer Harrison, along with writer/producer Brooks Wachtel, peer into the future to present an ominous portrait of a world unprepared for the coming Baby Boom explosion. “Silver Tsunami is a documentary short that features world renowned scientists, medical professionals, and experts focusing on an issue that already affects every country in the world. 

Well researched and filled with astonishing statistics on our aging world population, the film presents strong, undeniable evidence that the world is on the verge of a devastating epidemic -- an epidemic that will impact every facet of society, testing the strength of local and national government infrastructures.

The film features a panel of world-renowned experts on aging, including:

  • Brian Kennedy, PhD, current CEO of The Buck Institute for Research on Aging. His innovative work focuses on moving research in aging from simple organisms into mammals, studying pathways that modulate longevity in life forms from yeast to mice. A focus of his current research is the study of target of rapamycin (TOR) pathway, shown recently to extend the lifespan of mice, and how it can be regulated to treat diseases of aging.
  • Gordon Lithgow, PhD, director of the Buck Institute’s Interdisciplinary Research on Geroscience. His groundbreaking work sheds light on the mechanisms of aging by identifying agents to extend lifespan or prevent age-related disease. 
  • Simon Melov, PhD, heads the Buck Institute’s Genomic Core, exploring the role of energy-making units inside cells. His research helps identify molecular hallmarks of aging to guide the development of anti-aging therapies. The Melov lab looks for broader genetic fingerprints of aging by surveying the patterns of gene activity in various animals.
  • Judith Campisi, Ph.D, has received international recognition for breakthroughs in understanding aging as the largest single risk factor for developing diseases.  She’s widely recognized for her work on senescent cells -- older cells that have stopped dividing -- and their influence on aging and cancer. She is the recipient of MERIT awards from the National Institute on Aging, Gerontological Society of America, American Federation for Aging Research, and the Longevity prize from the IPSEN Foundation.
  • Julie Andersen, PhD, a renowned expert on Parkinson’s disease who is pursuing a wide array of leads toward treatments for this complex neurodegenerative disorder. The Andersen lab is also involved in identifying potential biomarkers for Parkinson’s that may allow early interventional therapy.
  • Dale Bredesen, MD, founding president and first CEO of The Buck Institute For Research on Aging. His research has led to new insight that explains the erosion of memory seen in Alzheimer’s disease, and has opened the door to a new therapeutic approach.
  • Kevin Perrott, researcher, entrepreneur, cofounder of SENS Foundation, former board member of the Methuselah Foundation. He is founder and CEO of AgeNet (Aging Research Network), a Canadian charity sponsoring aging research. He continues to support the advance of aging research as the VP of the American Aging Association, and through his research at the Buck Institute.
  • Julie Mangada, PhD, a post doctoral fellow, who runs the educational program, as K-12 Education Outreach coordinator at the Buck Institute.

6/18/14 11:44 PM

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