Turning Back the Clock: Kernel Founder Conducts Biological Age Experiments

Bryan Johnson

Bryan Johnson, founder of Braintree and Kernel, is trying to turn back the clock.

Optimizing every aspect of his health, Johnson is publicly chronicling his efforts to rewind his body’s biological age.

Project Blueprint

A common critique, most breakthrough studies in the anti-aging space have only been performed on mice. Our ability to crack the code for humans remains out of reach.

With Project Blueprint, Bryan Johnson is working to change that. Following a rigorous wellness protocol, Johnson painstakingly measures all 78 of his organs, reading his body’s biomarkers to generate a daily routine:

  • Leveraging “gold standard scientific evidence” on optimal nutrition, Johnson eats carefully constructed meals, consisting of a variety of vegetables, nuts, seeds, and berries.
  • Crafting the perfect sleep environment, Johnson uses WHOOP to monitor the quality of his sleep and adheres to a meticulous list of sleep hygiene requirements.
  • Following a strict workout regimen, Johnson (age 44) currently performs at the physical equivalent of the top 10–25% of 18-year-olds in a series of fitness tests.

In the eight months since he began Project Blueprint, Johnson claims to have reduced his epigenetic age by 5.2 years, or about six months of age reversal per month.

Living Forever

A growing concern, the world’s centenarian population is expected to 8x by 2050. As we live longer, age-related conditions from dementia to cardiovascular disease are costing us more and more.

In the past few years, activity and interest have picked up considerably in the longevity space, and investors are all in:

  • Bezos-backed Altos Labs just launched out of stealth with a whopping $3B of committed funding.
  • In early January, Life Biosciences raised an $82M Series C to continue developing its therapeutics for modifying aging biology.
  • Last December, Korify Capital assembled a $100M venture fund focused on longevity and mental health.

But while longevity scientists work on their next breakthrough, individuals like Johnson are working on optimizing health with what we know now — integrating existing knowledge on exercise, sleep, and nutrition into a cohesive, end-to-end system.

While Blueprint is by no means the first to do this—Tim Ferriss and Dave Asprey’s publicly documented biohacking endeavors essentially popularized the quantified self—Johnson distinguishes himself from these efforts. He asserts, instead, that he is conducting an “exploration into the future of being human.”

Punchline: Most people don’t have the resources (Johnson spends over $1.5 million a year) to stick to this regimen. But, Project Blueprint reflects a growing wave of researchers, from David Sinclair to web3 org VitaDAO, who are expanding our collective horizon on longevity and performance. Together, their research is shaping a better understanding of human health, providing much-needed statistics in a field with scarce data.