Things had been ducky for David Sinclair. A driving force behind intriguing, buzz-worthy research on aging and gene expression, the Harvard scientist helped introduce the world to resveratrol, a putative age-fighting, cancer-fighting ingredient in red wine.
And his recent article in Cell describes a chemical pathway that may link together several lines of truly major scientific inquiry.
So we hope he bounces back from a what-was-he-thinking decision to join the advisory board of Shaklee Corporation, a company that markets Vivix Cellular Anti-Aging Tonic, “the world’s best anti-aging supplement.”
The elixir costs $100 for a one-month’s supply. It’s loaded with resveratrol, which has been shown to have beneficial effects in mice, but not yet—and who knows if it ever will—in humans.
In response to inquiries by the Wall Street Journal about his apparent endorsement, Sinclair resigned from Shaklee’s board and claimed Shaklee associated his name inappropriately with Vivix.
Shaklee counters that Sinclair approved the use of his name in its promo materials, and points to his comments at a sales conference where he references his work and adds, “…we can take this technology to our friends, to our family, and have the benefits…right now.”
Shaklee sells Vivix through distributors that work for commissions and organize their own marketing, according to the Journal. Sinclair’s picture had appeared until quite recently for example on a Web site where Vivix is claimed to erase age spots, eliminate leg cramps and repair damaged skin.
Sinclair’s resignation does not affect his role as co-chief adviser to Sirtris Pharmaceuticals, which is studying pharmaceutical applications of resveratrol.
GlaxoSmithKline recently purchased Sirtris in a deal that allowed Sinclair to pocket more than $8 million, according to the Journal.