Countess Elizabeth Bathory was said to be obsessed with the notion that bathing in the blood of young girls was the key to eternal youth. To that end, legend has it that she murdered as many as 600 girls.
It seems that Bathory was a pioneer for today’s wealthy elite.
The Spanish firm Grifols helped set off a kerfuffle last year when it, along with other firms, offered nearly double the going price for blood donations for a COVID-19 treatment trial. Brigham Young University in Idaho had to threaten some enterprising students with suspension to keep them from intentionally trying to contract COVID-19. The trial failed, however, and now the Barcelona-based firm is hoping to extract something far more valuable from the plasma of young volunteers: a set of microscopic molecules that could reverse the process of aging itself.
Anti-ageing is the subject of frenzied research – and fevered conspiracy theories. One of the beliefs of the QAnon conspiracy theory is that the wealthy elite are harvesting the chemical adrenochrome from sacrificed children in order to stay young for as long as possible.
As it turns out, Alex Jones may not be as completely crazy as he’s made out to be.
In the months before the pandemic, investors ponied up billions of dollars to fund biotechs aimed at commercialising the new science. Some biotech firms are developing drugs and infusions designed to clean up the zombie-like cells and metabolic junk that accumulate with age. Others hope to infuse new vigour into flagging cellular components, such as stem cells, or spur the body into beneficial actions by adding obscure hormones or proteins that decrease as we get older.
“Calorie restriction” has been the poster-child of previous efforts at anti-ageing. But starving yourself in order to live longer isn’t much fun.
Enter the modern Frankensteins.
Biologists are literally sewing mice together, a macabre procedure known as “parabiosis”. The mice are surgically conjoined to share circulatory systems.
Not just any random mice, though.
Rando conjoined elderly mice with younger rodents so that they shared the same circulatory system, then tested their ability to heal small wounds. The results were dramatic. Elderly mice were able to repair small tears in their muscles far faster than their peers not conjoined to younger mice. The younger mice, on the other hand, healed far slower than they normally would[…]
The infusion of new blood led to a threefold increase in the number of new nerve cells generated in the brains of the elderly mice. But that was not the only revelation. He had already shown that the young members of the conjoined old-young mouse pairs generated far fewer new nerve cells than young mice left to roam free, untethered to their elderly cousins. And while the old mice grew more energetic, the younger mice suddenly behaved as if they were middle-aged.
Obviously not even the most desperate ageing Hollywood superstar would be too keen on hauling around a surgically-conjoined young blood bag. Instead, researchers are working on other methods of medical vampirism.
“Reputable” biotech companies are attempting to isolate the factors in young blood that apparently revivify the aged and decrepit in order to develop anti-ageing drugs. Others, though, are less scrupulous.
In 2016, a former Stanford Medical School student named Jesse Karmazin, opened up Ambrosia, a clinic in Monterey, California, offering to infuse clients with the blood of donors between the ages of 16 and 25 for $8000 a liter[…]Business Insider reported in August 2019 that Karmazin said he was shutting Ambrosia down. By November, he’d hung a new shingle, Ivy Plasma, offering “off-label” treatments with young blood.Newsweek
And that’s just the one we know about. It’s almost certain that there are more, far more secretive, clinics offering similar treatments to the aged elite. We can only hope that they’re harvesting their product from volunteers.
Meanwhile, there’s another dollar in the “Alex Jones was right” tip jar.
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