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Startup Raises $250M To Use Placenta To Extend Life And Cure Cancer

Stem Cells.PublicDomainPictures/Pixabay

Companies have been trying to unlock the secrets to regenerative medicine for years and one startup just raised $250 million by intending to use human placenta to do so. The company believes that using the disposable byproduct of birth will lead to new methods of extending the human lifespan and perhaps even cure cancer.

The company, in question, is Celularity, which is actually a spinoff of Celgene Cellular Therapeutics, the biotech giant. This pursuit is a result of a partnership between X-Prize and Singularity University founder, Peter Diamandis and Celgene founder, Robert Hariri, Forbes reports.

“Celgene allowed me over a fifteen-year period to build on of the largest cell-based therapy companies in the world,” Hariri said about the technology. “We think there is a rich landscape for using these biological materials in everything from orthopedics to neurological disease.”

Celularity will basically take any human placenta, which is typically discarded after birth, and then use the relevant cells in these materials to create regenerative medicine. The idea is to reduce the rate of rejection by using material that humans are already used to since it’s what they were born in.

What really makes this particular process ideal is the fact that it bypasses one of the biggest obstacles to traditional embryonic stem cell research, Futurism reports. Religious organizations like the Catholic church have been fierce in their resistance, which has bogged down progress in this particular field. With placenta, there’s hardly any reason for anyone to complain.

Ultimately, the company intends to create the kind of medicine that would make 100 year-olds feel like they are 60 again, as well as novel ways to treat cancer. There is still a considerable amount of research to be done and human trials are still a long way off, but if Celularity succeeds, humans could be saving others simply by giving birth.

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