(Ask me how I know—I’m great fun at bars.)
The sad truth is that the topic of radical human life extension just hasn’t penetrated the public consciousness in a meaningful way (yet!).
But there are places where the budding biogerontologist (or even the curious layperson) can start conversations with, “What’s your favorite method for inducing senescent cell autophagy?” and not be politely shown the door.
And these places are called longevity conferences!
Yes, and these marvelous anti-aging events exist, not only on the internet, but out in the real world. So you can leave the harsh white light of the lab, or the dark confines of your basement, and interact with actual, flesh-and-blood people who, just like you, want to end the scourge of aging within our lifetimes.
(Well, except for in 2020, because COVID-19.)
I’ve put together a list of the top 16 longevity conferences (including both in-person and online life-extension events) so you can finally see if that senolytics joke you’ve been practicing in the mirror for the last three months actually lands.
Best Longevity Conferences and Events for 2020
These top longevity conferences were selected using a couple criteria. To be included in this list, the event must:
- Have a primary purpose of increasing the healthy lifespan of human beings.
- Take place in 2020 (or, if delayed and rescheduled because of COVID-19, originally was so planned)
- Have at least three sessions devoted to presenting new research on human life extension, longevity therapies, and/or rejuvenation interventions.
I organized the below list of top life extension conferences in alphabetical order.
A quick note on the difference between longevity conferences and aging conferences:
- Date: March 8-9, 2021
- Location: London, UK
- Cost: $99-$949
This longevity conference, originally slated for June of 2020 has, unsurprisingly, been rescheduled due to COVID-19 and will now take place in March of 2021.
But don’t be bummed out by the delay, because this conference, run by scientific conference company Sciinov (who also put on the Healthy Aging and Rejuvenation Summit last year), has got some great longevity topics. With talks on Blue Zones, stem cell whole body rejuvenation, and how diet and stress affect telomere length, you’ll have plenty to look forward to when 2021 rolls around.
- Date: August 20-21, 2020
- Location: Online
- Cost: $300-$500
If you’ve been in the longevity space for even a little bit, odds are you’ve chanced upon the Life Extension Advocacy Foundation (LEAF) and their flagship site Lifespan.io. With a solid longevity blog and tons more advocacy and even research fundraising tools, LEAF is a well-known resource in the life-extension space.
Ending Age-Related Diseases is LEAF’s big longevity conference each year and, though it was online-only this year due to COVID-19, it’s still bringing together some of the biggest leading lights in the field and covering some of the most exciting and cutting-edge topics in life extension research. With speakers like Aubrey de Grey of SENS, Steve Horvath (of Horvath’s epigenetic clock fame), and James Kirkland of the Mayo Clinic attendees are sure to get a packed two-days-worth of biotech and longevity news, discussion, and connections.
While the 2020 event has ended, recordings of the online sessions have started to be uploaded to LEAF’s YouTube channel.
- Date: TBD, 2020
- Location: San Diego, USA
- Cost: TBD
Led by Peter Diamandis’s (whose XPrize Foundation is also sponsoring a series of human Longevity Challenges) Singularity University, Exponential Medicine is a four-day conference focused on how technologies can “reinvent health and medicine.”
While much of the conference’s topics are only of ancillary interest to life extensionists (e.g. how to use voice applications in medical software), a good many of the talks and papers presented are right on the money for longevity enthusiasts. Speakers like rockstar geneticist David Sinclair and futurist Jamie Metzl discuss senolytics and CRISPR’s impact on healthspan, while doctors like David Fajgenbaum talk about self-experimentation and other novel ways of speeding up access to therapies and cures.
This is another conference whose schedule is, unfortunately, up-in-the-air in 2020 due to COVID-19.
- Date: October 19-20, 2020
- Location: Bratislava, Slovakia
- Cost: €1,260-€3,200
Postponed this year at least until October, the Future of Health Summit in Slovakia has four main conference tracks and at least two are of direct interest to life extension: “Genomics Research & Precision Medicine,” and “Prevention Before Care.” While this event is aimed more at European medical and health professionals, many topics are broadly applicable. Talks of note include discussions on personalized medicine, AI to assist genomic research, and an overview of the “longevity market” and which companies are currently pursuing life extension therapies.
- Date: TBD, 2021
- Location: Boston, USA
- Cost: TBD
Also unfortunately postponed until 2021 due to COVID-19, this one-day symposium is helmed by David Sinclair, Co-Director of the Paul F. Glenn Center for Biology of Aging Research at Harvard and, through his lab, one of the most prominent anti-aging researchers in the world today. His book, Lifespan: Why We Age— and Why We Don’t Have To, is a must-read life extension book outlining our current understanding of aging and the therapies and interventions being studied right now to treat it.
The host and location alone should be enough to recommend this event to anyone interested in life extension, but the topics of the talks also don’t disappoint. Sinclair and the other presenters cover things ranging from “On the Genetics and Epigenetics of Aging” to “mTOR and Lysosomes in Growth Control” and, since these are the folks doing the actual research, you can be assured it’s all bleeding edge science.
Topics may be a little advanced for the average non-scientist, but the educated layperson likely won’t have any problems following along.
- Date: October 29-November 1, 2021
- Location: Beijing, China
- Cost: $100-$500
Hosted by the International Society on Aging and Disease, this conference has a heavy focus on longevity and dealing with the damage and diseases caused by aging. With speakers from countries all over the world including Denmark, Israel, India, China, and the U.S. the ICAD is a broadly international event. Topics covered range from longevity interventions to the relationship between DNA damage and age-related diseases to stem cell applications for combating age-related diseases.
Speakers of note for life extensionists include the chairman of the Israeli Longevity Alliance, the Head of the Laboratory of Genetics of Aging and Longevity in the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, and the founder of the British Longevity Society.
- Date: Summer, 2021
- Location: Bregenz, Austria
- Cost: $250-TBD
With talks like “Targeting cellular senescence for healthy aging” and “Mechanisms underlying functional rejuvenation by mTOR inhibition” this symposium, originally planned to take place in July 2020 but pushed to the summer of 2021, has a lot to offer the longevity-conference-curious.
Organized by Dr. Holly Brown-Borg of the University of North Dakota and sponsored by organizations like Google’s secretive Calico anti-aging company as well as the National Institute of Health, non-scientists could be forgiven for thinking the topics covered by this event might be too technical for them to benefit. But luckily the plan is to “maximize the value of the conference for students and newcomers to gerontology” by providing an introduction to the space that will help the educated lay person understand and put into context the talks to follow.
- Date: July 19-22, 2021
- Location: Lisbon, Portugal
- Cost: €1,547-€1,858
Organized by conference company Fusion Limited, and chaired by Linda Partridge of UC London’s Institute of Healthy Ageing and Heinrich Jasper of biotech giant Genentech, the 4th Interventions in Aging Conference will take place in July of 2021 due to COVID-19.
This is another can’t-miss event for life extension fans. Past conferences have included talks on targeting the hallmarks of aging with rapamycin, understanding the epigenetic mechanism of intermittent fasting, and immunosenescence and how senescent cells affect aging—and speakers have included folks from distinguished longevity-related institutions like the Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing, the Salk Institute, and the Mayo Clinic.
- Date: Ongoing
- Location: Online
- Cost: TBD
As a result of COVID-19, many in-person longevity events have had to be canceled, delayed into 2021, or moved online. Longevity2020 is a direct response to this situation.
Run by LongevityTechnology, this series of online longevity events is bringing key researchers, scientists, medical professionals, and entrepreneurs in the longevity space right into people’s homes even as social distancing prevents everyone from attending conferences in-the-flesh.
- Date: July 21-22, 2021
- Location: London, UK
- Cost: £625-£1,245
The UK-based LSX (“Life Science eXecutive”) Leaders puts on this longevity event and several smaller, regional ones every year. Normally done in-person, 2020’s event was online-only (‘cuz COVID).
Billed as an opportunity to connect executives in the life sciences and longevity industries with the “capital, intelligence, innovation, and partners” to help them grow, this conference features tons of speakers (over 100 for the 2020 event) coupled with a small number of attendees (300 or so) for a more intimate opportunity. Speakers include Aubrey de Grey of SENS, Gregory Bailey of bio-pharma company Juvenescence, and Tina Woods of Longevity International.
- Date: January 28-30, 2020
- Location: San Francisco, USA
- Cost: $599-$3,147
The Longevity Therapeutics conference is organized by conference company Hanson Wade in partnership with a host of longevity organizations and institutions like Lifespan.io and the Aging Analytics Agency.
Similar to the Longevity Leaders Conference, this anti-aging conference brings together a relatively small number of attendees (fewer than a hundred) with dozens of speakers and industry partners to allow for intimate discussions and connections. With a focus on turning research into actionable and effective anti-aging therapies and interventions, the Longevity Therapeutics conference is a great option for proactive life-extension crusaders and researchers.
- Date: November 19-20, 2020
- Location: Valencia, Spain
- Cost: €250-€550
Billing itself as the first major longevity and genomics conference in Europe, the Spain-based Longevity World Forum plays host to medical professionals, entrepreneurs, and researchers from around the world.
Speakers include Liz Parrish of BioViva, Maria Abramson of SENS, and Manuel Collado of the Laboratory of Stem Cells in Cancer and Aging at Santiago de Compostela. Past talks have presented on the role of diet in lifespan extension, translating senolytic medicines into clinical trials, and how AI might impact human longevity.
- Date: May 13-14, 2020
- Location: Amsterdam, The Netherlands
- Cost: TBD
This regional conference covers gene editing, rejuvenation biotech, and anti-aging startups, and has managed to snag high-profile speakers like George Church (Harvard scientist and creator of the Human Genome Project), and Nobel Prize winner Elizabeth Blackburn.
- Date: October 2-4, 2020
- Location: Online live stream
- Cost: $147-$247
RAADfest is one of the most prominent US-based longevity conferences. Though online for 2020, it’s usually held in Las Vegas every year and organized by The Coalition for Radical Life Extension.
If you’re an anti-aging activist and want to be star-struck, RAADfest is the place to be. This conference really attracts the heavy hitters in the longevity science space, from Liz Parrish of BioViva, to Aubrey de Grey of SENS, and Ray Kurzweil of Google (and The Singularity is Near fame) along with dozens more.
RAADfest’s presentations tend to feature cutting-edge yet layman-accessible research. With almost 1,000 attendees, it’s one of the top anti-aging events by its scale alone. Over 70 life-extension and longevity companies also show up to present their wares to those curious about what the market has to offer doctors, researchers, and consumers.
- Date: Originally May 31-June 5, 2020; rescheduled to 2022 due to COVID-19
- Location: West Dover, Vermont USA
- Cost: $655-$1,380
Chaired by Vadim N. Gladyshev and Vice-Chaired by the famous Steve Horvath of Horvath’s Epigenetic Clock, this inaugural aging research event is aimed primarily at “established and junior scientists” in the longevity sciences field.
While unfortunately delayed to 2022 due to COVID-19, this conference is likely to touch on some of the most exciting research and breakthroughs in aging, rejuvenation therapies, and other longevity interventions. Though its target audience and the likely technical nature of talks may mean it’s more for advanced life-extension enthusiasts.
- Date: May 13-15, 2021
- Location: Berlin, Germany
- Cost: €200-€850
Last on the list alphabetically, but actually one of the biggest and most-important conferences on longevity and life extension, Undoing Aging is SENS’s (longevity giant Aubrey de Grey’s research foundation) big annual conference held in Berlin in partnership with Michael Greve’s Forever Healthy Foundation.
The conference has been put on by SENS since 2003 and has a well-earned respected place among top life extension conferences (it may be the best-known life-extension event in the world). Delayed now to 2021, the conference’s focus will be on “rejuvenation now” and “highlighting the first generation of human rejuvenation therapies that are either currently in clinical trials or are available today.” Undoing Aging promises to be one of the most exciting longevity conferences to happen this year.
Which longevity conferences did we miss?
Is your favorite life extension event not on this list? Did you attend one of these events and want to share your story? Let us know in the comments!
(Or just share your favorite senolytics-based jokes. We think the world would be better with more of them.)
I’m the co-founder of Longevity Advice and have been passionate about radical life extension ever since I was a teenager. Formerly I was a content marketing director in the B2B software space. I’m also a sci-fi novelist, wargame rules writer, and enthusiast for cooking things in bacon fat. My sister once called me “King of the Nerds” and it’s a title I’ve been trying to live up to ever since.