Funded project
Clinical Trial - Regular Exercise & Intermittent Rapamycin Dosing

Clinical Trial - Regular Exercise & Intermittent Rapamycin Dosing

This clinical trial aims to investigate whether periods of time where the mechanistic target of Rapamycin (mTOR) pathway is activated via exercise, combined with alternate periods of time where mTOR is inhibited using Sirolimus (Rapamycin), will result in greater muscle performance in older adults compared with just exercise alone.
$ 50,000
99.88% Voted Yes
Study Website
Dr. Brad Stanfield
Research Lead

Phase 2a Clinical Trial

Drug repurposing


Patent Status



VitaDAO recognizes the importance of credible science in the field of healthspan and longevity research. One aspect of current longevity research that remains challenging is the translation of research from model organisms to humans, and the clinical trial regime that is imposed on new interventions. There is a view that a number of currently approved drugs - those that have long since completed the regulatory hurdles - have shown observable, incremental effects on longevity. One such drug is Rapamycin.

Rapamycin is an approved drug for prophylaxis of organ rejection in patients aged 13 years or older receiving renal transplants. The proposed human clinical trial is meant to establish whether intermittent Rapamycin use demonstrates a functional improvement in frailty and sarcopenia endpoints.

Aims, Hypothesis & Results

Rapamycin is a best-in class-treatment, meaning it provides one of our strongest chances of seeing healthspan improving effects - yet surprisingly, few human trials have tested its healthspan effects.

As a Phase 2a trial in humans - focused on functional improvements in sarcopenia - this study will support our understanding of Rapamycin impacts on ageing related decline in physical function, but also work towards establishing a framework for regulatory approval of interventions that are preventative in nature related to ageing.

The clinical trial protocol can be found here:

In contrast to the ongoing PEARL trial for rapamycin and ageing (NCT04488601), this proposed trial will measure muscle power and strength by combining rapamycin intake with an exercise regimen. The primary outcome for this proposed trial is the 30-second chair test, which is a robust and clinically relevant marker of performance. In addition, several secondary outcomes will be measured including but not limited to: community balance and mobility, hand grip strength, 6-minute walk test, DNA methylation age, and serum levels of NAD+, cholesterol, and S6K. Importantly, this Phase 2 study is not powered enough to say that Rapamycin + exercise is better than exercise alone, instead it will be used to determine safety and some preliminary results. This proposed trial will be a stepping stone to a much larger study involving ~400-500 individuals.


Dr. Brad Stanfield is planning to conduct a Phase 2a clinical trial to test the effect of rapamycin on age-related frailty and sarcopenia. The trial includes recruitment and data analysis, and the results of the trial will be used to determine safety and some preliminary results. The hope is to make the trial a stepping stone to a much larger study involving 400–500 individuals.

Phase 2a Clinical Trial: Regular Exercise & Intermittent Rapamycin Dosing
Required Funding: $400,000
Duration: 13 weeks

VitaDAO Board Evaluation Writeup

Dr. Brad Stanfield is a medical doctor who has developed a strong following on YouTube for his informative and well researched videos on healthspan related interventions and science, and is an asset to the longevity community.

There is a large amount of literature from numerous organisms showing that rapamycin treatment can lead to improvements in healthspan/lifespan. This trial, aiming to test the effect of rapamycin on age-related frailty and sarcopenia, has a robust study protocol with the potential to lead to a more rigorous phase 3 trial.

The budget for the clinical trial is $400,000. VitaDAO will provide $50,000 USD (1/8th of the project budget) and look to activate our community to solicit more funding. In the United States, is supporting the fundraising for the trial as a 501(c)3 charity.

Though there is no immediate intellectual property for VitaDAO from this project, our support is intended to advocate for further research into off-label use of approved, off-patent drugs and show our support for innovative and crowdsourced funding of research. This is complementary to VitaDAO’s support of, and the social impact bond model in VDP-17.

Projects supported
No items found.

Latest Project Updates

No items found.
Project Initiated!

Discover more projects & initiatives

The Longevity Prize


The Longevity Prize is a series of prizes to award and accelerate progress in longevity and rejuvenation research. It was initiated by VitaDAO and funded through donations through our gitcoin quadratic donation round and partnered with Foresight Institute, Methuselah Foundation and Lifespan.

$ 24,000
View Project

The VitaDAO Longevity Fellowship


The VitaDAO Longevity Fellowship is aimed at distributing need-based micro grants to help students and early career stage individuals with interest in longevity get more deeply involved in longevity. This is aimed at activities ranging from short term research to attending a conference, or joining a program such as the Longevity Biotech Fellowship.

$ 20,000
View Project

Humanity - Proprietary Aging Score App


Humanity is a quantified-self app that connects wearables and activity apps to monitor digital biomarkers. The app generates a proprietary aging score, helping users understand activities that slow down or reverse their aging rate. The company uses behavior modification tools and develops biomarkers to guide users toward better healthspan interventions.

$ 50,000
View Project

Matrix Bio - Long-lived Species Inspired Longevity Biotech


VitaDAO and the Gorbunova Lab are launching Matrix Bio, a cutting-edge research venture leveraging the anti-cancer and pro-longevity effects of high molecular weight hyaluronic acid from naked mole rats to humans.

$ 300,000
View Project

Are you working on the next longevity science breakthrough?

Click here to explore the VitaDAO Project Funding FAQ.