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The FDA officially warns against buying young blood



The US Food and Drug Administration warns consumers consumers about buying young blood infusions to improve their health is not a good idea. It is actually a very bad idea because there is no clinical evidence that the infusions are doing anything and the procedure can be dangerous.

"Simply put, we are concerned that some patients are being preyed on by unscrupulous actors who are treating plasma from young donors such as cures and remedies," writes FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb and Peter Marks, director of the FDA Biological Center evaluation and research in the warning. "Such treatments have no proven clinical benefit to the use that these clinics advertise for them and are potentially harmful."

The idea that infusions of young blood could slow aging has been around since the early 2000s, when studies in mice showed promising results. (Especially, the young and old mice were not just sharing blood, they were attached and actually shared organs as well.) The concept got real traction some years ago, thanks in part to the rumor that venture capitalist Peter Thiel was interested in transfusions. As elsewhere, including Bloomberg despite the incredible nature of the claim noticed jokes about vampyrism and a spear on the show Silicon Valley the idea has not gone away and young blood clinics exist. In particular, a startup called Ambrosia Medical promised transfusions for $ 8,000 a liter. "It works," Ambrosia founder Jesse Karmazin told a Mic reporter. "It reverses aging."

There is almost no evidence that this claim is true. Some of the researchers who did the original juvenile blood studies have shown (again in mice) that old blood hurts more than young blood, and it suggests it is a better idea to just study why old blood is harmful. In 201

7, a strict clinical trial found that young blood given to 18 patients with Alzheimer's did almost nothing to treat the disease. Not only is this ineffective, but even typical transfusions can be dangerous, leading to a few dozen deaths reported to the FDA each year.

It is clear that much more research on this "treatment" is needed, although it has not stopped companies like Ambrosia from selling it to people. A study by Huffington Post showed that Karmazin is not allowed to practice medicine in Massachusetts, ran a poorly designed study of juvenile efficacy that did not even have a control group, and did not provide any information from said study , despite continuing to take people's money.

Over and over again, researchers have made it clear that there is no good data to support this practice. The FDA finally agrees. So please, if the lack of clinical evidence and questionable practices in startups were not deterrent, listen to the FDA on this.


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