Topics AMED Joins Global Challenge Seeking Solutions for Improving Healthy Longevity


Japan - AMED in collaboration with the U.S. National Academy of Medicine and seven other global organizations, today announced that it has joined the Healthy Longevity Global Grand Challenge, a multiyear international challenge seeking breakthrough innovations to extend human health and function later in life.

Dramatic advances in medicine and public health have resulted in unprecedented extensions of the human lifespan across the world over the past century. By 2050, people over age 65 will number over 1.6 billion, accounting for 20 percent of the global population ― more than double the number today. Coupled with declining fertility rates, however, this demographic shift presents many challenges to economic and workforce stability, health care systems, and rural and urban communities, which may result in older people experiencing lower quality well-being during a longer lifespan.

However, if global societies embrace strategies to maximize healthy longevity, the aging population presents a tremendous opportunity, rather than a burden. Extending good health and productivity later in the lifespan would allow older people to remain active contributors to the economy, their communities, and families and reduce their overall need for social and health care services. Interdisciplinary research and innovation are urgently needed globally to generate important advances and breakthroughs that can help aging global populations achieve healthy longevity.

The Healthy Longevity Global Grand Challenge is conceptualized, founded, and coordinated internationally by the NAM. It calls on teams and individuals of any background - including biomedical sciences, technology and engineering, social sciences, financing, and beyond - to submit bold, innovative ideas, with the goal of extending the human healthspan. It seeks to amass a diverse portfolio of ideas, focusing on areas such as disease prevention, molecular pathways, mobility, functionality, social connectedness, and more.

It consists of three phases internationally:

  • Catalyst Phase
    Approximately 450 awards will be issued globally as seed to advance new, innovative ideas (starting in 2020). Awardees will be invited to attend an annual Innovators Summit - the first of which is set for summer 2021 -- to share their work with policymakers, researchers, potential investors, and fellow innovators from around the world.
  • Accelerator Phase
    Awards worth $500,000 to $1 million USD or more will be issued to those meritorious Catalyst awardees who have demonstrated significant progress, in order to support the further advancement of their bold ideas (starting in 2021).
  • Grand Prize
    One or more grand prize(s) of up to $5 million USD will be awarded for achievement of a breakthrough innovation that extends the human health span (starting in 2023).

In Japan, the AMED will issue up to 60 Catalyst Awards to Japan-based projects under support of AMED between 2020 and 2022.

Other organizations issuing Catalyst Awards include Academia Sinica of Taiwan, Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, EIT Health (supported by EIT, a body of the European Union), Ministry of Health and National Research Foundation of Singapore, United Kingdom Research and Innovation, U.S. National Academy of Medicine (supported by Johnson & Johnson Innovation), and U.S. National Institute on Aging.

For detailed information, visit As part of the competition’s commitment to share knowledge and stimulate an entire field by not only rewarding innovative ideas but also sharing those ideas with the world, summaries of all winning ideas will be available on this website starting in summer 2020.

Part of the NAM’s Healthy Longevity Global Grand Challenge, it will unfold in parallel with the NAM’s Global Roadmap for Healthy Longevity, an international, independent, and multidisciplinary initiative that will assess available evidence and recommend strategies for global societies to maintain and advance the health and productivity of aging populations.


HLGC Desk, Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development (AMED)

Address: 1-7-1 Otemachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-0004, Japan

E-Mail: healthy-longevity"at"

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Last updated 10/21/19