We may have found the Fountain of Youth. Or at the very least, we’ve found Forever Labs. It’s a new Y Combinator startup that seeks to help you live longer and healthier by preserving adult stem cells. Because as it turns out, drinking from a mythical source of water is not, in fact, the key to eternity.
While some of us may be familiar with the concept of freezing our eggs, few until now have considered applying the same concept to our stem cells. But this, Forever Labs believes, is a mistake. This is because stem cells can be transformed into any kind of cell the body needs (which is why so much research already exists surrounding these supremely adaptable cells). However, as Forever Labs points out on its website, “The number and therapeutic quality of our stem cells diminishes with age.” But if you store them, you may be able to preserve them for future use, thereby combating disease and, just maybe, aging.
How does it work? Using a patented device, Forever Labs collects stem cells from your blood marrow, which the team calls “a wellspring for stem cells that replenish your blood, bone, immune system, and other vital tissues.” The whole process is said to take around 15 minutes, with “most clients” reporting a “five to 10 second pressure-like sensation.” And don’t worry — no scars will result from the process.
Once your cells have been extracted, the company offers to “grow and bank your cells for $2,500,” as TechCrunch explains. You’ll need to pay an extra $250 every year for storing your cells, or if you’d rather, just pay a flat fee of $7,000 for life.
If you’re looking to get into the storage game earlier rather than later (Forever Labs will start collecting cells as long as you’re 18 or over, and suggests that younger is better), then it seems that this $7,000 option might be a bit better. “As the loss and decline of bone marrow stem cells continues throughout one’s life,” Forever Labs notes, “and as this decline accelerates with age, storing at any age may provide benefits to your future self,”
So if you’re looking for a way to live forever (or just a bit longer), this may be a good way to hedge your bets.
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