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Vol. LXIV, No. 18
August 31, 2012

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Rando Asks ‘Is Aging Reversible?’ at Mahoney Lecture

Dr. Thomas Rando

Dr. Thomas Rando of Stanford University School of Medicine will examine the provocative question “Is Aging Reversible? Resetting the Aging Clock” at the annual Florence Mahoney Lecture on Aging on Sept. 12. The lecture, cosponsored by the NIH Director’s Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series and NIA, will be given at 3 p.m. in Masur Auditorium, Bldg. 10.

Professor of neurology and neurological sciences at Stanford, Rando and his colleagues focus on the biology of skeletal muscle stem cells in adult muscle homeostasis, aging and disease. Groundbreaking work from his lab shows that the age-related decline in skeletal muscle stem cell function is due primarily to influences of the aged environment rather than to intrinsic aging of stem cells. In addition, Rando and his team concentrate on the pathogenesis and treatment of muscular dystrophies, with particular emphasis on cell and gene therapy.

“Dr. Rando has been a major force in demonstrating the existence of factors in the circulatory system that speed up or slow down aging,” said NIA director Dr. Richard Hodes. “The identification of these factors will be instrumental in our search for a better understanding and, ultimately, interventions to promote healthy aging.”

Rando earned an A.B. degree in biochemistry in 1979 and an M.D.-Ph.D. in cell and developmental biology in 1987 from Harvard University. He completed his clinical training in neurology at the University of California, San Francisco, and postdoctoral training in the department of molecular pharmacology at Stanford University, where he was a Howard Hughes physician postdoctoral scholar.

In addition to his faculty appointment, Rando is director of the Glenn Laboratories for the Biology of Aging at Stanford. At the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System, he is director of the Center for Tissue Regeneration, Repair and Restoration at the Research Rehabilitation and Development Center of Excellence, where the focus is the emerging field of regenerative medicine. He is also chief of neurology service at VA Palo Alto. In addition, he was founding director of the Muscular Dystrophy Association Clinic at Stanford University Medical Center.

The recipient of numerous awards, Rando has been recognized throughout his career by academic and professional societies and grants institutions. He has received a Paul Beeson Physician Faculty Scholar in Aging designation from the American Federation for Aging Research, the Ellison Medical Foundation Senior Scholar Award and a “Breakthroughs in Gerontology” Award from the American Federation for Aging Research.

In 2005, Rando received an NIH Director’s Pioneer Award for his innovative work on the connection between stem cell biology and the biology of aging.

Rando’s presentation is NIA’s 26th annual Mahoney Lecture, named in honor of Florence Stephenson Mahoney (1899–2002), who devoted the last half of her life to successfully advocating for the creation of NIA and increased support for NIH.

There will be a reception and an opportunity to talk with Rando in the NIH Library immediately following the lecture.

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