Extraordinary Aging Experts
By: Christine Scioli
As a partner in a small film and video production company, I’ve had the pleasure of working closely with exceptional scientists and physicians on many projects. Years ago Dr. Isaac Asimov astounded me with his ability to explain complicated theories in simple terms while narrating the documentary film Innovations, based on the book Man the Engineer by science writer L. Sprague de Camp. Working with Dr. Laura Esserman, Director of the UCSF Carol Franc Buck Breast Cancer Center on a video about ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), revealed a consummate level of compassion mixed with unswerving determination to win both the battle and the war.
In similar fashion, our recent documentary on healthy aging, Who Wants to Live Forever, the Wisdom of Aging, http://www.aginginc.com, introduced us to two stellar scientists from CPMC Research Institute/Sutter Health, Dr. Steve Cummings and Dr. Greg Tranah.
Though I am of the aging age (as are we all), it was a pretty innocuous article about a woman’s hip replacement who was my age that piqued my interest. So I got to thinking about what was going on in the aging world, and approached my production team and Greg Tranah with the idea for this film.
It will be two years next month that he and I began to communicate; shooting began in January 2015. The film is airing now on KQED/PBS World and on Amazon Direct Video in the US, UK, Japan and Germany.
They are a compelling duo in many regards, relaxed explaining various complex topics for the layperson to understand such as autophagy and circadian rhythms, while at the same time adding both humor and reflection in their commentary. One of the various topics we explore is that of staying mentally engaged as we age and Steve shouts that by example, as he is, numerically speaking, of the senior set.
Our film covers many facets in the field of aging – economic, political, social and philosophical, along with the medical side of things. Time and time again since its release, we have received kudos for the exceptional scientific research we have presented.
Our sincere thanks to Steve and Greg and Dr. Peggy Cawthon at CPMC, along with the phenomenal team at the Buck Center for Research in Aging for making us look so good.