While it is impossible to escape mortality entirely, Google-backed life sciences company Calico reportedly has plans to launch a $1.5 billion research and development center with an underlying goal of extending the lifespan of humans. The future San Francisco-based aging research center, to be built in partnership with biopharmaceutical company AbbVie, is said to focus on drug discovery and development for diseases such as neurodegeneration and cancer. 

“This particular moon shot won’t come cheap,” reports Re/code. “Calico and AbbVie said they are splitting costs equally by each committing $250 million upfront, with an option to add $500 million more. Calico is to lead the first five years of early development, with AbbVie managing late-stage development and commercialization.”

According to Calico CEO Arthur D. Levinson, the former CEO of Genentech, his company will work to develop life-enhancing therapies for individuals with age-related diseases. Levinson replaced the late Steve Jobs as Apple’s chairman of the board in late 2011, a position that he has held since. Levinson has also been the chairman of Genentech since 1999 and sits on a number of other health and science related boards.

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