Ted Anton


The quest for immortality has fueled human longing since humans first walked upright.  When two University of California researchers found in the early 1990s they could extend healthful life by tweaking one gene in a lab worm, the interest and investment exploded in a way unlike any other recent science story.  As the pace of discovery accelerated, so did powerful personal rivalries and public fascination, driven by the hope that a longer, healthier life for us was around the corner.  As the global population ages, the potential impact of these discoveries on society is vast, as is the potential for profit.

The Longevity Seekers takes readers inside a tale that began with worms and branched out to snare innovative minds from California to Crete, investments from big biotech, and endorsements from TV personalities like Oprah and Dr. Oz. Some of the research was remarkable, such as the discovery of a human enzyme that stops cells from aging.  Some, like an oft-cited study touting the compound resveratrol in red wine, turned out to be highly controversial, igniting a science war over truth, credit, and profit.

This book offers a behind-the-scenes look at the state of the research and the impact it might have on global public health, society, and even our friends and family.   With all the elements of a great story, The Longevity Seekers sheds light on discoveries that could fundamentally reshape human life.

"Anton reveals a young field already rife with larger-than-life personalities and lab drama aplenty,"
Barbara Kiser, Nature.

"A must-read.  The characters are fascinating.  And the stories behind the breakthroughs that have already occurred are gripping enough to compete with a mystery novel.  Any one of the scientists profiled by Anton is likely to change the course of history." S. Jay Olshanksy, Health Affairs

"Anton vividly recounts the excitement in the various labs... and the intensity of the scientists' search,"
Bee Wilson, Harper's

"A valuable, engaging addition to the literature on longevity. . . . Anton is well equipped for the task of translating complicated scientific matters into accessible language. . . [His] polished prose almost qualifies The Longevity Seekers for The New Yorker or a good detective yarn; understated are his extensive research forays, the double-checking of facts. and the erudition that undergirds the book.” W. A. Achenbaum, Global Public Health

The Longevity Seekers was named a finalist in nonfiction for the 2014 Book  Awards from the Society of Midland Authors.

A link to The Longevity Seekers recent lecture at the National Hellenic Museum in Chicago:


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