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Company that is trying to cure death is now online

Cheryl Santa Maria
Digital Reporter

Wednesday, August 13, 2014, 4:00 PM - Calico, a Google-funded company that's hoping to cure death, is now officially online.

Google launched the company in September, with the official website debuting earlier this month. The biotechnology group aims to "tackle" aging and eventually slow its process.

"Calico is a research and development company whose mission is to harness advanced technologies to increase our understanding of the biology that controls lifespan," the company says on its new website.

"We will use that knowledge to devise interventions that enable people to lead longer and healthier lives. Executing on this mission will require an unprecedented level of interdisciplinary effort and a long-term focus for which funding is already in place."

There isn't much on the site yet but visitors can learn more about the company's six employees.

Some experts believe that it's impossible to live forever, with many arguing that the maximum human lifespan is 125 years, because age-related diseases like dementia and heart disease make it hard to move past that.

Others have argued that slowing or stopping the aging process is the only way to significantly extend the human lifespan.

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"They’re certainly not taking on an easy task, considering that they’re tackling something that’s hard-coded into our physiology," says Weather Network digital meteorologist Scott Sutherland.

"However, researchers have been gaining insights into why we age, especially with studies involving telomeres, so with further advances in technology and medicine, there’s a definite possibility that we could have breakthroughs in this field. It won’t happen soon, but it could happen."

But if we could live forever, should we?

"When you consider the staggering potential for overpopulating the planet if nobody died, and questions about whether or not we’d be able to psychologically handle the concept of living forever, I’d say we’re definitely not ready for it," Sutherland says.

"At the same time, right now, our ability to dream about science and technology and space travel far outpaces our ability to actually realize those dreams."

So far, Calico hasn't disclosed how it plans to carry out its mission.

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