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WHYWEAGE

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A road map for European ageing research

Coordinator: Olivier TOUSSAINT
Project Number: 200970
EC contribution: 499,176.00
Project website: http://www.whyweage.eu/

The rapid increase of life expectancy in Europe is essentially a positive outcome from improved health care and socioeconomic progress. However age-related deteriorations of health greatly impinge upon the health care and social security systems. This fosters an increasing necessity of keeping as long as possible the elderly in relatively healthy conditions. Unravelling the fundamental mechanisms of ageing is a pre-requisite for maintaining activity and independence of the elderly, thus improving the quality of life at older age. After some preparative effort made in FP6, time has come to federate the European research on ageing around commonly agreed perspectives, considering the need for progress in an area of great socioeconomic and political stake in Europe. The next step is therefore to raise a road map for the European research on the molecular aspects of healthy human ageing, considering also some aspects of development. Based on an assessment of the state of the art in molecular gerontology and breakthroughs in biotechnology, we shall clarify the main priorities for the next 15 years. We will engage an open and transparent mechanism to support a closely prepared and coordinated series of subtopic research workshops merging in a get-together integrative conference. In order not to start from scratch again, the selection of the participants will be based namely on the list of 50 associate and 14 full members, academic and industrial, of the ongoing FP6 Linkage Coordination Action, led by the coordinator of this proposal, experienced in successfully managing European projects. Distinguished scientists working in other fields of molecular biology and biotechnology will also participate. The conclusions of the workshops and final conference will be published in a series of position papers.

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