James Peyer is the founder and managing partner of Apollo Ventures, an early stage life science investment fund investing in Europe and the U.S. focused exclusively on breakthrough therapeutics arising from the study of the biology of aging. Apollo founds companies with scientists, invests in early stage therapeutics projects, and works with scientific teams to build biotech companies. The company invests in core technologies that show promise in reversing aging and extending human lifespan.
“My whole group thinks of ourselves as scientists first and investors second, and so we really get super, super excited about a specific mechanism of action or a cool new way to develop a drug or a way to target aging,” James says. “That’s kind of the hook that brings us into a project much more than some of the traditional financial metrics.”
He also gives talks all over the world on the topic of aging, discussing how our newfound knowledge of what makes us age will enable the greatest medical breakthroughs of the 21st century.
In this episode of Bulletproof Radio, we talk about what venture capital has to do with aging and why it matters that deep investments are being made in the arena of longevity. We touch on bio-freedom, as well as how working intentionally within a system can persuade skeptics and change the world. We cover a lot of ground, including the population effects of longevity, genomic instability, telomere attrition, epigenetic alterations, loss of proteostasis, altered intercellular communication, mitochondrial dysfunction and more.
Enjoy the show!
More about James Peyer, Ph.D.
James studied immunology at the University of Chicago and earned his doctorate from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, where he was a National Science Foundation Fellow and worked on the basic biology of stem cells and improving gene therapies and inventing new ways of statistically analyzing relationships between stem cells and their environments. While earning his Ph.D., he founded his first company, Genotyp, at age 21, to overhaul hands-on science education in the U.S. Genotyp’s innovative biotech equipment leasing model and instructor training earned it the approval of the White House and the National Institutes of Health. It became the first biotech company to receive funding through Kickstarter.com.
Follow Along with the Transcript
- Most pharmaceuticals were developed to treat bad and acute conditions 00:13:20
- How investors deal with anti-science 00:19:50
- People are inherently short-termist 00:24:10
- What is natural and what is supplementation? 00:41:00
- The first year that there were more people over 65 than under 5 was last year 00:47:30
- Most breakthroughs come from a confluence of disciplines 00:51:30
- What is Genomic Instability? 00:56:15
- What is Telomere Attrition? 00:57:45
- Epigenetic Alterations? 00:59:05
- Loss of proteostasis? 01:00:40
- Altered intercellular communication 01:03:10
- Mitochondrial dysfunction 01:04:30
- Cellular senescence 01:05:10
- Big Ideas:
- How food regulation turns it into a drug when you make claims 00:16:20
- Why are only older people interested in anti-aging? 00:22:40
- How regulatory bodies will need to shift with the health care industry 00:29:20
- What is bio-freedom? 00:33:00
- Lance Armstrong and general regulation of competition 00:39:35
- If people live longer, what will happen to the global population? 00:45:45
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