My attention was drawn recently to a small mouse life span study run by one of the groups that has been in the longevity community for a while now. It is interesting for testing combinations of interventions that have in the past been demonstrated to modestly slow aging in mice (such as rapamycin), or modestly improve aspects of cell function in old tissues (such as nicotinamide mononucleotide). Combinatorial studies are rare in academia and industry, for reasons that have a lot to do with (a) the perverse incentives produced by the existence of intellectual property, in that the rights to use specific interventions can be owned, granted, refused and (b) the way in which the huge cost of regulatory approval determines which projects that can be successfully funded, typically only those in which patents grant a monopoly on use.

The results are much as one might expect, given the interventions chosen, in that most of the combinations did little to nothing to mouse survival and life span. The only one that appears to have an effect is the use of C60 – an intervention that, you might recall, has a checkered history in animal studies. The most recent data, from Ichor Therapeutics and others, who spent some years working with C60, is that it is not a useful intervention in the matter of modestly slowing aging.

Unfortunately, this study did not control for inadvertent calorie restriction. When an intervention makes mice feel ill, they will eat less. Mouse weight is a sensitive barometer of mouse well-being. Even minor degrees of calorie restriction can extend mouse life span, distorting the effects of interventions. This is one of the reasons why rigorous studies, such as those conducted by the Interventions Testing Program, tend to find no effect when repeating earlier studies in which an intervention was claimed to modestly slow aging. Sadly, this means that positive outcomes here don’t have all that much weight, and it is possible that some of the neutral outcomes are actually poor outcomes.

Our mouse longevity study completed with interesting results. Frankly, we did not know what to expect. We tested our products and other promising substances on 245 interbred male C57BL/6 mice. We started the interventions when mice were 300 days old (about 50 in human yrs). Caveats: the sample sizes were very small, optimal dosages were guesses, and we did not weigh the mice – so some effects may be from dietary restriction, etc.

1 C60 99.95 Olive Oil 10%

2 C60 in MCT oil 10%

4 cycloastragenol, NMN, fisetin, icariin, berberine, cistanche, AFA algae

5 exosomes, klotho, FOXO4-DRI, gdf11, epitalon

6 rapamycin, Azithromycin, metformin, NMN, spermidine, echinacea

7 NMN, fisetin, C60

8 RG7834, DHEA, berberine, fisetin, NMN

9 berberine, BHB, NMN, ALA, cycloastragenol, spermidine, DHEA, rhodiola, fisetin, icariin, echinacea, cistanche

10 rapamycin, metformin, aspirin, niacin, RG7834, spermidine, FOXO4-DRI, gdf11

11 centrophenoxine, exosomes, fisetin, metformin

12 double dose fisetin, double NMN, double cycloastragenol

13 klotho, RG7834, spermidine


16 gdf11

17 spermidine

18 double NMN, double berberine, double centrophenoxine, double cycloastragenol, double fisetin

20 NMN, ALA, pterostilbene, cycloastragenol, centrophenoxine, spermidine, DHEA, melatonin, rhodiola, luteolin, fisetin, icariin, echinacea, cistanche, carnitine

21 double fisetin, double NMN, double berberine, NAC, DHEA, echinacea, cistanche

The best intervention was Intervention 1 (red line), C60 Olive Oil (the mouse feed was supplemented with about 10% C60 in organic olive oil). This group also had the largest number of mice (16), so the confidence that something real is happening is greatest with this intervention. The next best group was Intervention 9 (NMN, spermidine, berberine, BHB, ALA, cycloastragenol, dhea, rhodiola, fisetin, icariin, echinacea, cistanche). The following next best interventions are clustered closely around the control, so no conclusions should be made. Surprising that the poorest performer was Intervention #20 (NMN, ALA, pterostilbene, cycloastragenol, centrophenoxine, spermidine, DHEA, melatonin, rhodiola, luteolin, fisetin, icariin, echinacea, cistanche, carnitine) which is similar to the 2nd best performer. Also, Intervention #8 (RG7834, DHEA, berberine, fisetin, NMN) did not do well.

The results with our peptides/proteins did not appear to result in any significant longevity increases. Also, surprising was that the interventions with rapamycin did not appear to produce significant improvements. Lastly, ours is the first lifespan study to investigate C60 with an alternative lipid, we tried MCT oil (basically coconut), and there was no lifespan improvement.

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