X-Prize and Singularity University founder Peter Diamandis’ new endeavor is a new biotech start-up specialized in mining the human placenta for stem cells to use in new applications, including helping cancer patients and extending human life.
Celularity, which was founded in September 2017 in New Jersey just announced that it has raised $250 million in venture capital from various prominent companies and investors. Diamandis teamed up with Dr. Robert Hariri, the founder of Celgene Cellular Therapeutics, aiming to use stem cells found in the human placenta in order to quickly regenerate tissue and organs needed to treat cancer and other diseases. The idea is these types of cells can do a better job of helping us live longer, fuller, healthier lives.
In the last few years, science has discovered adult stem cells can come from a number of sources throughout the human body, including a woman’s placenta, shortly after giving birth. These stem cells can be taken from any placenta and injected into any human without the risk of the body rejecting them, according to the company.
“My goal is to make it so the next generation grows up in a world where cancer is managed just like the common cold, and the body’s natural regenerative engine remains empowered throughout our lives,” declared Hariri, in a written statement.
Diamandis and Hariri are obtaining human placentas through donations. Though some couples choose to keep their placental afterbirth, approximately four million human placentas are disposed of per year in U.S. hospitals. Legally, couples cannot take and sell the tissue to Celularity but they can donate it. Celularity also owns and operates LifeBank USA, the world’s only repository of donated placenta cells and biomaterials.
So far, the startup has conducted several clinical trials and treated hundreds of patients while the next step is to get FDA approval for mass scale treatments. It has three main varieties of medical products: biological repair products to help treat wounds, immunotherapy products to augment the immune system of patients with complex diseases and placental cell therapy products that augment a patient’s longevity.
“Our ultimate mission is to make 100 years old, the new 60, and to provide people with maximal aesthetic, mobility, and cognition as they age,” Diamandis said. “The 20 years of science, research, and intellectual property pioneered by my visionary partner Dr. Bob Hariri, is the cornerstone for the coming longevity revolution.”