Professor Richard Faragher, the University of Brighton’s Professor of Biogerontology, rejects the idea that the objective of ageing research should be the indefinite extension of human life. He argues: “This focus allows a selfish minority to misrepresent the altruistic goals of the scientific community.”
Professor Faragher is joining other eminent experts in Coruña, Spain for the debate on 7 November.
He believes there should be more investment in researching drugs and treatments to improve the quality of life in older age: “At a time when our capacity to translate new knowledge about the mechanisms of ageing into medicines and lifestyle advice is limited only by a chronic shortage of funds, older people are ill-served by self-indulgent science fiction.
“They need practical action to restore their health and they need it yesterday.”
The Professor’s comments come in the wake of recent discoveries he and his collaborator, Professor Lorna Harries of Exeter University, published recently on a new mechanism controlling ageing which they hope may prove amenable to treatment.
The debate will be conducted in Spanish and English, with simultaneous interpretation to and from each language. It has been organised by the University of Santiago de Compostela and is funded by the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology of the Spanish Government’s Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness.
You can listen to the debate on regueifas.org.