Amazon founder Jeff Bezos invests in lab working to prolong human life

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Jeff Bezos has enough money to last forever, so he may as well try to live just as long.

The 57-year-old former Amazon CEO is one of several investors in Altos Labs, a Silicon Valley startup working to create a reprogramming technology aimed at rejuvenating cells and potentially prolonging life, the MIT Technology Review reported. The goal of the lab’s anti-aging method is to revert adult, specialized cells into stem cells, which in turn, have the potential to turn into any kind of cell.

Scientists have said reprogramming has the potential to treat a range of medical issues, including vision loss, spinal cord injuries, brain injuries and other age-related degeneration.

Altos Labs also counts on Yuri Milner, and his wife, Julia, for funding. Milner, a Russian tech billionaire and founder of the $3 million Breakthrough Prizes, is also well-known for investing in companies such as Facebook, Twitter, Spotify and Airbnb. His estimated networth stands at about $4.8 billion, according to Forbes.

The startup has also drawn several top scientists to carry out the project, including Juan Carlos Izpisúa Belmonte, a biologist at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California. He previously dubbed the reprogramming method “the elixir of life,” emphasizing that he does not believe “aging is not an irreversible process.”

Belmonte previously made waves in the scientific community as part of a team based in China that created monkey-human hybrids called chimeras.

Other scientists joining the the lab’s team include Steve Horvath, a geneticist from the University of California who developed a way to detect the aging of cells from their molecular markers, and Nobel prize winner Shinya Yamanaka, well-known for her work on reprogramming in 2012. According to the Technology Review, he’s slated to head Altos Labs’ advisory board.

Bezos also holds stakes in several other startups conducting cellular research, including Nautilus Biotechnology, Sana Biotechnology, Denali Therapeutics and Juno Therapeutics, which is now part of Bristol Myers Squibb. He’s also invested in Unity Biotechnology, a startup creating technology aimed at delaying aging at the cellular level, along side fellow tech billionaire Peter Thiel.

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