Dr de Grey, a biomedical gerontologist, is chief science officer at the SENS Research Foundation which conducts counter-ageing research. He argued we could reach the point of ‘longevity escape velocity’, when scientific breakthroughs are able to keep pace with the ageing process, in as little as 20 years.
However the leading scientist called for a dramatic increase in funding for research aimed at stopping ageing, arguing it will revolutionise human society.
Speaking to Express.co.uk Dr de Grey stated massive advances in the fight against ageing have been made over the past two decades.
He said: “Oh a huge amount of progress has been made - absolutely immense.
“Over the past 15 years the whole concept that I first started putting forward about 20 years ago of comprehensively repairing the molecular and cellular damage that the body does to itself throughout life, that concept has become not only totally mainstream; we’ve seen enormous progress towards actually doing it in the laboratory and even now in the clinic.
“There are many different types of damage that need to be repaired which means there are many different therapies that need to be developed, but some of them are already in clinical trials and most of them have got to the point where they will be in clinical trials in the next year or two.”
The SENS Research Foundation, based in California, was founded in 2009 to conduct research aimed at halting ageing.
The first human to live for over 1,000 years is probably already alive according to Aubrey de Grey (Image: GETTY/YouTube_TedTalks)
Dr Aubrey de Grey claims big advances are being made towards combating ageing (Image: GETTY )
According to Dr de Grey it focuses on early stage research that is unlikely to attract commercial investment.
Asked whether the first human to live to 1,000 years is already alive Dr de Grey predicted they are.
He said: “Probably already alive - it’s very important to be probabilistic about this.
“We all know this is early stage research and therefore any timeframe predictions are extremely speculative.
“The number of 1,000 years is actually an extremely conservative estimate.”
Dr de Grey previously said longevity escape velocity is likely to be reached within 20 years.
Asked if still believes this he replied: “I certainly think that’s likely.
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“It’s crazy that politicians are keeping their heads in the sand like this" (Image: GETTY)
“In fact I think my estimate on how long it is before we have an at least 50-50 chance of reaching longevity escape velocity is now about 17 years so it’s coming down slowly as time goes on.
“The definition of the term is the point at which we reach the rate of progress that means we are staying one step ahead of the problem and that the health problems of late life are being postponed faster than time is