BILL ANDREWS HAS AN IDENTICAL TWIN BROTHER THAT THE FAMILY SAYS is more and more noticeably an older man standing beside his youthful and, at 61, athletically evolving brother, Bill. A clip from an HBO film in progress, for release in Q1 of 2014, shows Bill at 60 years old running a 138 mile non-stop ultra-marathon race last summer in the Himalayas cresting 18,000 feet. He finished 5th in a field of much younger runners where finishing the race itself was a rare accomplishment.
What is interesting is that Bill’s times and stamina keep improving. He is now constantly breaking his previous records and is targeting running the mile in 7 minutes … at 130 years old. Last year at age 60 he broke 7 life time records.
Bill Andrews, Ph. D., is a 32 year veteran Medical/Pharmaceutical Biologist and renowned Geneticist, named on 45 U.S. medical patents in the field of telomere research. He has already been in this field 20 years and some industry insiders feel he has a 10 year jump on the nearest industry activity as no one else is yet pursuing the kind of research he is doing, seeking to directly unlock the activation secrets of this process of continued cellular renewal.
Popular Science featured Bill Andrews and his work in a six page article in its Aug. 2, 2011 issue, that appeared on the news stands just days before Bill introduced a nutraceutical telomere supportive product called Product B™.
A similar nutraceutical product, TA-65, has been on the market since 2005. Although it is weaker per unit activation strength it nevertheless has met with a sensational and extensively documented response. Bill Andrews had a part in this product’s origins, was a prime candidate for a one year initial test and co-authored follow up scientific studies, the latest of which was released at the end 2013.
In 2009 the Nobel Medical Research prize was awarded for telomere research because of the momentum and visibility this field had gained over the previous three decades and witness to the growing buzz of its promise of potential age reversal.
Elizabeth Blackburn and her assistant Carol Geider on Christmas day, 1984, working with a single cell pond scum organism, the tetrahymena, discovered telomerase, an enzyme that lengthens the telomeres and activates cell immortality. The race was then on to find a human telomerase gene and to identify a way to activate its production.
Hearing of this for the first time in 1993 at a conference where Calvin Harley of Geron Corporation was the speaker Bill was mesmerized by the possibility of conquering aging, a goal he committed to at age 8 and recommitted himself at 12 years old. He says that all through high school and college he was known as the person who intended to conquer aging. He asked Harley to hire him and promised he would find the human telomerase gene within three months. “Geron believed me. They must have been aware of my reputation of being involved in a lot of big biotech discoveries.”, Bill says, referring to his ten years as a serious pharmaceutical biologist having assisted in the discovery of Human Growth Horomone and EPO (Erithropoietin) – both later to evolve in sports enhancing drugs – as well as Tissue Plasminogen Activator an anti- clotting agent for coronary emergencies that has today become a standard issue for every ambulance.
Bill started with Geron within two weeks. Three months and seventeen days later the team Bill led successfully cloned the human telomerase gene. Shortly after, his team also identified the protein components of that gene. This provided the context to discover what protein suppressant was turning off the telomerase production in the cells causing aging and to find a way to activate telomerase in the cell by canceling the suppressant.
This discovery spurred an explosion of scientific papers exploring the relation of disease to length of telomeres. Published articles on telomeres rose from a handful up to that point to more than 16,000 today.
After five years with Geron as Director of Molecular Biology, to Bill’s disappointment, his financially strapped employer veered towards a more bank friendly strategy of finding a telomere cancer drug application.
Bill was committed to aggressively pursue the most direct link to the anti-aging state of lengthened telomeres which was a dedicated search for teleomerase activator compounds. Reluctantly he left Geron to maintain his priorities and set up his own company, Sierra Sciences in Reno, Nevada. Bill chose Reno because it was a city that ran 24/7 allowing him to do research around the clock. He located across the street from Reno/Tahoe International airport so they could have instant global connections.
At least five prominent telomere scientists were skeptical that Bill would ever find a chemical to activate the latent telomerase gene present in every cell. Upon finding a cellular spike in telomorase on his 57,684th try Bill sent the activator compound to his doubting peers, each of whom confirmed his discovery. After that Bill would quote their findings as confirmation of his discovery.
Bill set out to produce within 15 years an FDA approved pharmaceutical drug that activated the telomerase gene testing hundreds of thousands of chemicals to that end. As a Pharmaceutical researcher he knew this would be a costly and lengthy venture.
According to a Forbes article studies show that from 1997 to 2011 the average new drug cost $5.6 billion to produce over ten years.
The 2008 economic crash seriously affected Bill’s investors, Logitech co-founder Pierluigi Zappacosta and Richard Offerdahl, co-founder of Zycad Corporation and majority owner of Digi International during it’s boom days. Funding was seriously curtailed causing staff and research at Sierra Sciences to be greatly reduced. By fortuitous chance Bill was introduced in April 2010 to master product formulator John Anderson, from Chandler, Arizona who had developed 2300+ natural ingredient health products in 27 countries for more than 600 companies, including the US government.
John Anderson, with years of experience traveling around the globe researching diets of long life communities gained a new urgency after being bitten by a brown recluse spider in 1999 that blinded him in one eye and seriously compromised his immune system. Battling for his life he stepped up his efforts to find, formulate and prepare botanicals, natural bacteria and other material to overcome his own health challenge to restore his eyesight and immune system.
Successfully regaining his health through natural treatment and new discoveries he went on to co-found Isagenix in 2002, with health industry veterans Jim and Kathy Coover, to distribute his health products on a peer to peer sales structure. Isagenix has generated more than $2 billion in total sales of John’s products with current annual sales of $300+ million targeting $500 million for fiscal 2013-14.
In their initial conversation John suggested that Bill could bypass the prohibitive FDA cost/delay and regulation of a drug rollout by creating a nutraceutical formulation sourcing chemical compounds from natural botanicals of Chinese, Ayurvedic and European origin. These botanical ingredients are labeled by the FDA as GRAS – generally regarded as safe.
Bill by the time he met John Anderson had tested 304,000 chemical compounds to find 300 partial activators to turn on cellular Telomerase. (A number that currently exceeds 500,000.) Unfortunately, while these compounds lengthened the telomeres of human cells in a petri dish, the cells routinely perished after 5 to 6 days due to the toxic nature of these chemicals. He had also tested 2600 friendlier natural compounds without a single hit leaving him skeptical of their future potential as activators.
In September 2010 John sent Bill an initial shipment of 15 possible activators which incredibly included one ingredient giving a positive hit as a telomerase activator. This was repeated in the next shipment of 15 botanicals. By the summer of 2012 a third generation Product B was formulated that exceeded the base level Bill had previously reached, notably without the toxicity levels that killed the cells and impeded human formulation. What shocked Bill was that several of the ensuing botanical preparation products he would receive from John were the same natural products he had tested without success.
John, personally, in his company, Dream Master, LLC, secured exclusive distribution rights for all nutraceutical (natural) telomere activation products produced by Sierra Science and built a $4 million state of the art 5 person lab in his backyard to prepare and test samples for Bill’s research.
Currently one can get the average length of their telomeres tested in various labs for about $200 – 300.00. This is only marginally helpful as each person’s health is vulnerable to their shortest telomeres and telomerase introduced into the body goes to work on these clusters of shortest telomeres first. While only the Life Length™ testing system at about $700.00 per test is able to identify this activity Bill says he has designed, in concept, a new testing process that he aims to implement once adequate funding is available.
Bill has had a good collaborative relationship with Dr. Maria Blasco. Dr. Blasco is the Director of the Spanish National Cancer Research Center in Madrid where she leads a staff including more than 200 medical doctors and Ph D’s. She is a prolific researcher and publisher of more than 130 scientific articles on the life extending nature of telomeres and is the founder in September 2010 of Life Length , a company with the objective of commercializing her system of Telomere Analysis Technology (TAT). Life Length™ is regarded as having the most accurate comprehensive telomere length testing available. In clinical studies underway Dr. Blasco is working with Dr. Andrews to measure change in telomere length of subjects taking Product B™.
While Bill and his team at Sierra Science were able to demonstrate telomere lengthening of human cells in a petri dish and elimination of cellular cancer by introducing telomerase, his peers and associates made startling progress in experiments with rats and telomerase. A team led by Maria Blasco, in Spain in 2007, was able to significantly increase the lifespan of rats with a single dose of telomerase.
Subsequently, researchers at Harvard, in 2010, dramatically reversed the aging of old mice. Mice with an equivalent human age of 80-90, with deteriorating skin and shrunken brains, unable to reproduce and find food in a maze, were within a single month transformed by the addition of telomerase to young vibrant rats with entirely restored brain size and reproductive capacity. “It was everything we could have hoped for.” said lead Harvard researcher, Ron Dephino. The media including Diane Sawyer of ABC News reported widely on this.
Two years after receiving John’s first samples for testing and just one year after the launch of Product B on August 14, 2011, Isagenix introduced a 3rd generation stronger formulation for Product B™. Bill Andrews was astounded that this formulation in two short years, using only natural products, rivaled the base activation strength of the strongest but “too toxic” chemical activator he had discovered over the previous decade plus of concentrated research prior to meeting John Anderson.
Research and development of further activators continues to provide for a progressively improved and strengthened Product B™. Bill Andrews speaking August 2012 said he and John Anderson to date have collaborated to find 15-20 natural botanical activators one of which, in itself, actually exceeds the strength of the strongest chemical activator his company had ever previously discovered.
The single event that may have influenced the Swedish Nobel Committee on Physiology or Medicine to select Telomere Research for its annual prize may have been the introduction of TA-65 in 2007. In 2002 industrialist and investor in Geron Corporation, Noel Patton, licensed a proven single ingredient telomerase activator from the financially challenged company to produce and market an anti-aging nutraceutical pill that supported and lengthened telomeres.
The product was introduced to the market through medical doctors. In 2007, Patton signed up about 100 affluent subjects who were willing to pay $25,000 each for the privilege of taking his untested supplement for a year while having their health closely monitored.
The chemical compound at the heart of the supplement, isolated and intensively refined from the traditional Chinese herb astragalus, was the only natural and non-toxic substance that had ever been discovered to enhance, albeit modestly, the body’s ability to produce the enzyme telomerase.
Bill Andrews was the first one to sign up and experienced a significant boost in his health and ultra-marathon performance while taking this capsule. Many of the other subjects reported big lifts as well, cognitive, sexual, all-around vitality etc. The athletes who subsequently signed up seemed particularly enthusiastic about their personal performance improvement. Dr. Joseph Raffaele, a prominent New York anti-aging doctor, Calvin Harley, the Telomere specialist at Geron who hired Bill Andrews in 1992, Maria Blasco, head of the Spanish National Cancer Research Center, and Bill Andrews, co-authored a paper detailing the findings of the yearlong study. Among other observations they found that TA-65 did not increase the mean length of telomeres but in almost every case reduced the number of short telomeres. Bill reports the unexpectedly positive results of the study.
“After TA-65 had been available for public consumption for approximately 3½ years, Sierra Sciences, TA Sciences, Geron Corporation, PhysioAge, and the CNIO jointly released a publication on its effects in September 2010. They found that patients taking TA-65 had proportionally fewer immune cells with critically short telomeres than they did at the beginning of the study. In individuals infected with CMV, a virus which prematurely ages the immune system and significantly reduces life expectancy, there was an even more dramatic improvement of the immune system that represented an apparent “age reversal” effect of approximately 5 to 20 years based on one biomarker of immune aging.”
The news media, celebrity anti-aging icon Suzanne Sommers and several anti-aging doctors enthusiastically endorsed the product.
Though Astragalus is a relatively weak telomerase activator impressive results continue to be realized through this product, in part due to its concentration (a years TA-65 supply for one person is extracted from about 1000 lbs of astragalus root ). Dr. Ed Park an Orange County, California Medical Doctor trained at Harvard and Columbia Universities was the 19th person to sign up for the intial TA-65 study in 2007 and continues to report impressive results personally and for his patients. He is recognized as a leading anti-aging medical doctor.
Today Bill’s own telomerase activator/supportive capsules are on the market containing numerous bundled activators. TA Sciences states upwards to 20,000 people have taken TA-65 over six years with no adverse effects. Isagenix says several hundred thousand people are currently taking Dr. Andrews’ and John Anderson’s collaborative formulation, Product B™.
TA-65 is available through doctors specially licensed with TA Sciences. Product B™ is available through peer to peer Isagenix distributors. While there are numerous copy cat products on the market claiming fountain of youth benefits Bill Andrews says his lab has tested them using the PCR process. They routinely fail to activate #telomerase in the cell that is necessary to extend telomere length.
Speaking in September, 2013, Bill sums up the status and projections of his research and the response to Product B™.
“Using a program called Real time PCR we open a cell up after 24 hours of introducing a new activator and ask if any telomerase is being produced. We have found 900 chemicals to date that stimulate telomerase production and have broken these down into 39 families of chemical structures. Using these structures we have produced 100’s of new chemicals using a process called medicinal chemistry resulting in chemicals that are three to four times stronger than what we started with. Right now we have chemicals that are 16 % what it takes to make a human cell immortal.
They are a little too toxic for human application and need to go through more safety studies but that is almost not important anymore because we have found natural compounds that are very potent, almost, but not quite as potent as our synthetics and I have a feeling it‘s just a few months before we find natural products that are more potent than any of our synthetics.
I have never seen so many anecdotal testimonies for any product ever. I am a pharmaceutical scientist by training. I believe in double blind placebo controlled studies. I believe that placebo effects occur but I have just never seen this many testimonials before. I strongly believe something is happening but I am not going to make any claims until the clinical studies are done.
There are going to be a lot of clinical studies done as we will investigate the testimonials to verify that they are real.”
Today Bill’s 10,200 square foot laboratory in Reno, due to the stalled investment, has reduced it’s staff from 40 to 6 as work continues to find ever more potent safe telomerase activators to turn back the effects of aging. He says the science is fun and easy but the investment part is hard.
Having set aside his former $10,000 speaker’s fee he now eagerly speaks to any group of size that is interested in hearing the telomere story and the telomerase sub-plot that he is convinced will make “short telomere disease” a mere historical footnote as he envisions that we will go on to live active lives with 150 year wisdom in 24 year old bodies untouched by dementia.
Undaunted by the sag in financial support Bill Andrews has plans for at least the next $100 million budget that will include new generation telomere testing and scientific double blind studies confirming the wave of positive anecdotal reports. Rumour has it that he is on the cusp of releasing a significantly improved generation of his Product B in the coming weeks.
Update: Speaking at the A4M Anti-Aging Conference in Nevada, December 2013, Bill Andrews in this short video decribes the mission and work of his company. He makes the bombshell announcement that within the coming year he expects to find chemical compounds with 100% HeLa activation of Telomerase within the human body, ie full cell immortality.
In the following question period he was asked how this was possible when he has been working since 1994 (1999 in Sierra Science testing over 500,000 potention activators) and reaching only 16% activation during this time. Bill’s response was that since his team has now identified more than 900 activators in 39 families of chemicals to date, they now have locked in the molecular structure which enables them to multiply their results via Molecular Chemistry allowing them to design their own increasingly effective chemical activators from here.