Theranos No. 2? Startup That Charges $8K To Inject You With Young Blood Now Doing Business In 5 U.S. Cities

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Written by Ann Brown
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Can “young” blood transfusions make you younger? Startup Ambrosia claims it does and is banking on people lining up for this controversial procedure. A worker holds a bag of blood that was donated at the National Blood Transfusion and Research Centre in Sanaa, Yemen, Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2017. A man donates blood in National Blood Transfusion and Research Centre in Sanaa, Yemen, Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2017. The director of Yemen’s national blood bank says the facility could shut down within a week after a medical aid charity ended its support. Ayman el-Shihari, the blood bank’s general director, said its closure could lead to a “humanitarian catastrophe.” (AP Photo/Hani Mohammed)

Can young blood transfusions make you younger? The founder of the new startup Ambrosia, Jesse Karmazin, claims it does and is banking on people lining up for this controversial procedure.

Has Karmazin hit on the fountain of youth? Or is his company another Theranos? Theranos, as you recall, was a privately held health technology corporation founded by Elizabeth Holmes that claimed to have created a breakthrough blood test that only needed very small amounts of blood. In the end it, it was all proved to be false — but not have the company and founder racked in millions of dollars from investors. 

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Ambrosia is still young, having been founded about three years ago and the verdict hasn’t been delivered one way or the other. But here’s what the company claims it des:  for $8,000 it can to fill your veins with young blood (drawn from people aged 16-25) and this will make you look and feel younger. The startup says it is currently operating in five cities across the U.S. — Los Angeles; San Francisco; Tampa, Florida; Omaha, Nebraska; and Houston, Texas. Ambrosia offers two options: 1 liter of young blood for $8,000, or 2 liters for $12,000.

And, you can pay via PayPal payments.

Stanford graduate Karmazin, who is not a licensed medical practitioner, told Business Insider Ambrosia completed its first clinical trial in 2017 but it has not made the results public.

While Ambrosia claims its transfusions will help fight aging by rejuvenating the body’s organs, there’s little to no evidence this works and some in the medical field say it could be dangerous.

“But because the Food and Drug Administration has approved blood transfusions, Ambrosia’s approach has been able to continue as an off-label treatment,” Business Insider reported.

According to the company it has infused nearly 150 people, ranging in age from 35 to 92, with the blood of younger donors. Of those, Cavalier said, 81 took part in its clinical trial. Even those who participated in the trials had to pay $8,000 for the transfusions.

“The trial, which involved giving patients 1.5 liters of plasma from a donor between the ages of 16 and 25 over two days, was conducted with David Wright, a physician who owns a private intravenous-therapy center in Monterey, California. Before and after the infusions, participants’ blood was tested for a handful of biomarkers, or measurable biological substances and processes thought to provide a snapshot of health and disease,” Business Insider reported.

“The trial was an investigational study,” Cavalier said. “We saw some interesting things, and we do plan to publish that data. And we want to begin to open clinics where the treatment will be made available.”