Since 1900 the global average life expectancy has more than doubled and is now above 70 years. This was mainly due to advances in science and technology leading to improved sanitary conditions, new therapies and drugs, new imaging methods, and the introduction of preventive medicine including vaccination campaigns and, later in the century, the promotion of healthy lifestyles. As the proportion of elderly people increases, so do the complexities of age-related medical care. We will discuss the prospect of future breakthroughs in precision medicine to solve fundamental medical problems associated with biological aging.
Jay Bhattacharya is a Professor of Medicine at Stanford University and a research associate at the National Bureau of Economics Research. He directs Stanford’s Center for Demography and Economics of Health and Aging. Dr. Bhattacharya’s research focuses on the health and well-being of vulnerable populations, with a particular emphasis on the role of government programs, biomedical innovation, and economics. Most recently, Dr. Bhattacharya’s research studies three topics: (1) the implications of population aging for future population health and medical spending in developed countries; (2) the implementation of payment reform under the 2015 Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization ACT (MACRA); and (3) the role of biomedical innovation on health. Dr. Bhattacharya’s peer-reviewed research has been published in economics, statistics, legal, medical, public health, and health policy journals. He holds an MD and PhD in economics from Stanford University.
Peter Thiel is an entrepreneur and investor. He cofounded PayPal, led it as CEO, and took it public; he made the first outside investment in Facebook, where he serves as a director; and he cofounded Palantir Technologies, where he serves as chairman. He has provided early funding for LinkedIn, Yelp, and dozens of startups, many run by former colleagues who have been dubbed the “PayPal Mafia.” He is a partner at Founders Fund, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm that has funded companies including SpaceX and Airbnb. He started the Thiel Fellowship, which funds young entrepreneurs, and he leads the Thiel Foundation, which works to advance technological progress and long-term thinking. He is also the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future.