Methuselah Foundation Gives Albert Einstein College of Medicine $1 Million to Develop Engineered Brain Tissue

WASHINGTON, Nov. 16, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Methuselah Foundation, the preeminent biomedical charity focused on extending the healthy human lifespan, has contributed $1 million to Albert Einstein College of Medicine to fund its development of engineered replacement brain structures.

Jean M. Hérbert, professor of neurosciences and genetics at Einstein, leads a team searching for ways to correct age-related neurological damage by removing the damage and replacing it at the small tissue level without losing memories or self-identity. Aging is a leading risk factor for most common neurodegenerative diseases, including strokes, brain tumors, aneurisms, cognitive impairments and dementias.

"Neurological disease takes an enormous toll on older individuals and their families," said David Gobel, the Foundation’s CEO. "Dr. Hérbert’s team is trying to achieve for the brain what medicine has long done with other parts of the body: Replace damaged tissue. 

"While brain transplants are out of the question, replacing small tissue in the brain is within reach," he said. "This research holds incredible promise for tens of millions of people around the world who suffer from dementia and other age-related brain diseases."

Einstein researchers have focused on neocortical tissue because the neocortex is the largest part of the human brain and it houses unique memories, thought patterns, highest cognitive abilities and self-identity.

The Hébert group is developing a protocol to reverse age-related brain damage by clearing damaged or degenerating tissue, then depositing precursor brain cells in the cleared area. The neural cells differentiate and form connections with appropriate targets in the brain, restoring brain function.

Beyond repairing damaged brain tissue, researchers at Einstein are also exploring the use of engineered brain structures to accelerate the testing of drugs or therapies for any type of brain disorder. Engineered brain tissue could be used to replace less reliable animal models and would allow researchers to quickly assess the efficacy of a drug or therapy on human tissue before undertaking costly and time-consuming clinical trials.

"We are grateful for Methuselah Foundation’s support," said Hérbert. "The financial backing will certainly accelerate our progress, but the Foundation’s recognition of our work is equally important.  The Foundation has spent more than 20 years at the forefront of aging research and finding cures for age-related disease."

Einstein, ranked among the nation’s top medical research facilities, is based in New York.

About Methuselah Foundation
Methuselah Foundation is a biomedical charity established in 2001, and named after Methuselah, the grandfather of Noah in the Hebrew Bible, whose lifespan was recorded as 969 years. The Foundation’s mission is to make age 90 the new 50 by 2030. The organization has funded independent longevity research, underwritten several international competitions aimed at promoting scientific breakthroughs, financed dozens of companies and initiatives developing products to extend the healthy human lifespan and created or sponsored four other foundations and venture funds to promote the mission of extending healthy life.  For more information, visit the Foundation website, or check it out on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or LinkedIn.

For more information, contact:

Florina Gobel, Methuselah Foundation
(206) 643-8175


Jim Martinez, rightstorygroup
(312) 543-9026

SOURCE Methuselah Foundation

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