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Biotech CEO Undergoes Gene Hacking to Reverse Aging

Biotech CEO Undergoes Gene Hacking to Reverse Aging

by Giulio PriscoOctober 19, 2015

Liz Parrish, CEO of biotech startup BioViva, says she underwent a gene therapy at an undisclosed location overseas last month, a first step in what she says is a plan to develop treatments for ravages of old age like Alzheimer’s and muscle loss, MIT Technology Review reports.

“I am patient zero,” Parrish said in a Reddit AMA. “I have aging as a disease.” Recognizing aging as a disease that future medicine should be able to cure is an important paradigm shift.

BioViva plans to develop and deliver a suite of therapies each targeting the different consequences of aging and disease and promoting a longer and healthier life. Parrish, who also founded BioTrove Investments, is interested in changing the paradigm of disease and how we view aging and more importantly, how we will treat it moving forward.

The medical procedure reportedly took place on September 15 in Colombia. Some observers are skeptical, but a filmmaker claims to have filmed the procedure, and hopefully more information and videos will be available soon.

Parrish said that she received injections containing the gene follistatin, which in animal experiments is shown to increase muscle mass, and intravenous dose of viruses containing genetic material to produce telomerase, a protein that extends telomeres, a component of chromosomes known as the “aging clock.” In the Reddit AMA, Parrish said:

It has been over a month and I am sleeping well and have a lot of energy, no other changes reported but we will do blood work soon and I take many pictures.

The Era of Gene Therapy Tourism

The MIT Technology Review article notes that Parrish’s treatment might mark the start of an era in which people receive genetic modifications not just to treat disease, but to reverse aging.

Predictably, the article mentions “ethical” questions about how quickly such treatments should be tested in people and whether they ought to be developed outside the scrutiny of regulators.

Liz Parrish

BioViva CEO Liz Parrish

It appears, however, that Parrish could work around the predictably heavy scrutiny of US regulators by choosing to have her gene hacking sessions done abroad. Therefore, Parrish’s treatment might also mark the start of gene therapy tourism – a form of medical tourism motivated not by cheaper treatments abroad, but by the availability of advanced genetic therapies that are still banned in the home country.

“Gene-therapy preparations, which use a virus to shuttle DNA into human cells, could prove risky,” notes MIT Technology Review. “But the technology has advanced so far in the last decade that it is within reach of a small company.”

Matthew Scholz, CEO of biotech startup Immusoft, imagines that Parrish’s choice might inspire enthusiastic amateurs to try to modify their own DNA, thereby “shifting the balance of power to patients.”

More autonomy and power to patients, often oppressed by the official medical establishment, is urgently needed, and Parrish is to be praised for starting the DIY gene therapy wave by experimenting on herself, like Louis Pasteur did.

“I am happy to be patient zero,” said Parrish in the Reddit AMA. “It is for the world, for the sick children and sick old people.” She added that BioViva is a company that has the mission to get these treatments to those who want it.

Some members of BioViva’s scientific advisory board have criticized Parrish’s decision and distanced themselves. But renowned genetic expert George Church, who is also a BioViva science adviser, is cautiously supportive. He said he didn’t agree with dodging regulators, but added that he found Parrish’s claims plausible.

Images from BioViva and BioTrove Investments.

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  • Ira Pastor

    Thisis the beginning of something new that will take on a life of its own
    and most likely result in the emergence of a parallel system of care.

    The convergence of several unique trends, including:

    – personalization of medicine on an “n-of-1” basis,
    – adaptive clinical design,
    – globalization of health care training,
    – compassionate use legislative initiatives for experimental therapies,
    – wider acceptance of complementary medical technologies,
    – the growth of international medical travel,

    the fact that we globally spend $7 trillion annually ($1 trillion spent
    on pharmaceutical products alone, with $200 billion of new R&D) and
    have an absence of curative interventions for any chronic degenerative
    diseases via traditionally regulated channels

    has brought this DIY bio-genie “out of the bottle”

    The “safety argument” has been obliterated by the system’s own actions.

    Today there are literally hundreds of FDA approved products that can:

    – prolong QT and/or Cause Torsades De Pointes resulting in sudden cardiac death;
    – which are IARC Group 1 and 2 carcinogens;
    – which have significant ”black boxed” SAE warnings;
    – not to mention the 2+ million ADEs (100K+
    fatalities annually in U.S. alone) which come from products that have gone through decades of human testing.

    Animal models remain poorly predictive for humans, yet remain a
    mandatory cornerstone behind years and millions of dollars of early drug
    development activities. Penicillin kills guinea pigs and produces birth
    defects in rats, aspirin is poisonous to cats, cancer has been “cured
    in mice” thousands of times, and dozens of drugs found safe in animals
    are later withdrawn from market due to adverse drug events in humans.

    Additionally, we continue to spend billions of dollars on traditional
    “gold standard”, population level clinical studies, despite the fact
    that they use definitions of disease that are excessively inclusive
    (based upon disease characterizations from literally decades ago), while
    at the same time are excessively exclusive of major segments of the
    patient populace.

    What people have begun to understand is that it is pretty much all a big
    gamble, any way you slice it – so why not become an “n-of-1”?

    One only needs to survey the landscape where such dynamics exist in
    “stealth mode” in current society to see where these concepts are
    already permeating our lives.

    From a therapeutic perspective, current FDA initiatives regarding
    expanded access, off-label use, “animal rule only” development, and
    botanical drugs, as well as their public written position on personal
    importation, all highlight examples of various degrees of clinical, “let
    the patient beware” freedom that the agency is quietly willing to grant
    subjects today who seek out such products or who engage in related

    Further afield from pharmaceuticals, markets such as dietary
    supplements, cosmetics, processed ingredient foods/beverages, tobacco,
    legalized marijuana, and pesticide/herbicide usage, all technically
    represent large, uncontrolled clinical experiments on the general
    public, that we all are quite willing to accept today as personal

    It is an interesting new era.

  • Al Kyda

    So who gets to decide who lives forever and who dies? Will wealth be the primary determinant of this?

    I would imagine that most billionaires, being billionaires, wouldn’t mind living forever to enjoy their riches and progress into some sort of a god-like existence as they gain knowledge and experience throughout the eons, and perhaps modify themselves — first genetically, then electronically, finally escaping into the eternal life afforded by a machine substrate for the neurological patterns that comprise them.

    In short, it seems this line of research, if successful, will enable some to become gods, while most will still turn from dust to dust.

    Perhaps this has already happened long, long ago, and we’re living within a superintelligence far beyond comprehension by our primitive wetware?

    • Giulio Prisco

      Technologies that people really tend to quickly become cheaper and better due to market pressure. Think of the first mobile phones, big and heavy as bricks and very expensive. Today cell phone companies will give you a much better phone for free when you sign up.

      • FreeJack Furlong

        don’t be so naive. your government wants you have a phone so they can track you easily. that’s the only reason they are cheap and plentiful in today’s society.

        • Giulio Prisco

          I guess that’s partly true, but there’s no need of conspiracy theories to explain what basic market economics explains perfectly well. If it’s clear that there is money to be made, many players will spend R&D money to improve products and bring production costs down, and the product’s ecosystem will take off. In a few years, the product will be better and cheaper.

          • Zoe D Katze

            The only money she’s received is mine and a penny stock firm and they’re on there way out, closing today at $.0062 per share, in other words they sold $756.00 worth of stock today.

            The symbol is STVA follow them yourself.

            In the past 3 months they’ve dropped from $.30 per share to Friday’s $..0062 with a chart that goes strait down. More importantly they have NO VOLUME 122,000 shares at 6 cents a share is $756.00 of stock sold today. That’s not enough to keep the lights on, but it’s not supposed to it’s just another penny stock scam created to put money in the founders pockets before they drift away. Everyone she’s involved with is a hustler, Stevia the penny stock, Jason Williams the decertified radiologist, Aubrey de Grey who calls himself a Dr but he’s not.


            Don’t say you weren’t warned!

          • P. H. Madore

            It breaks down with some technologies, though, like storage, which can be attributed maybe to collusion between manufacturers.

      • Al Kyda

        Eternal life will likely require technology on a quite different level as compared to smartphones, which advanced simply due to Moore’s Law and routine market forces. It’s more along the lines of space tourism, which only multimillionaires can afford nowadays, but will probably require orders of magnitude more resources and undertaking. Only billionaires might be viable clients at first, and it’s unclear whether the technology would ever become accessible to normal mortals. I wonder whether perhaps the concepts of gods and mortals throughout human history had their roots in a technological singularity long ago, which effectively created the two classes of beings.

  • advancedatheist

    You can mock Miss Parrish now. But wait until she goes into the mountains, creates an ice castle with her superpowers and plunges the world into endless winter.

    • Singhapura

      The cold never bothers me anyway

      • advancedatheist

        “Let It Go,” the transhumanist grrl power anthem.

  • Tom K

    no hegemony of consciousness…carbon | silicon
    we inhabit time to evolve

  • Christopher S. Jannette

    Give her the Nobel Prize for Medicine!!!!

  • Brad Arnold

    Let me refer to BioViva’s ethics page: ( ):

    “BioViva believes everyone should have access to cutting-edge medical treatments, not just those who can afford it. New technologies rapidly become accessible to consumers, now more than ever…To hasten this process we intend to construct a manufacturing facility to significantly reduce the cost of our gene therapies. We have invested in mass production technologies such as bioreactors in order to produce more vectors reduce the final price for the consumer. We will continue to seek more efficient methods in our constant search to bring access to everyone.”

    • Zoe D Katze

      If that’s truly the case, why is she partnered with a penny stock firm and hustling men out of their money? With no background in Medicine, biology, chemistry and her only background in lying and hustling I can tell you that a few months after a her procedure where she was treated outside the US by a Radiologist who was de-certified and sanctioned by the FDA, she is already looking much worse in a mere 90 days. Since we know these injections cause cancer in both in Vico and in vitro I’m concerned she’s already showing the signs. There’s a reason while clinical trials are done in 3 stages and take extended time. If you want to see what she looked like prior to the zColombian procedure, there will soon be a series of websites scientifically refuting her entire scam. One at another at She’s soooo intelligent she didn’t even buy who own domain. My guess is because this entire thing is a scam so why would she want the world seeing her name. Only those stupid enough to be hustled out of their money by her, embarrassingly, me included

      • Brad Arnold

        I am so surprised by your take on this. Since I have dealt in other somewhat unorthodox, but third party verified, technologies, I’ve ran into a few individuals that simply believe that they are fraudulent and lead crusades against them for (what appears to outside observers as) idiosyncratic reasons bordering on zenophobic. Since this is the first time I’ve had exposure to your viewpoint, I can’t say, but needless to say I will be keeping a close eye on you to see if you are on the level or just expressing hatred and undue skepticism resulting in defamation rather than true information.

        • P. H. Madore


  • FreeJack Furlong

    good luck. i heard all the useless trust fund babies on this planet are fairly high on the grim reaper’s list.

  • Zoe D Katze

    Bioviva I

    I first met Liz Parrish Founder and President of Bioviva Sciences on in 2012, 2 years after my wife of 34 years died from Lymphoma, I was her perfect mark. Lonely, depressed, and wealthy. She began by sending me a partially nude photo (anyone is welcome to see), it will soon be posted along with further detailed information on a new website, The domain which I purchased yesterday is After receiving the photo came lie number one, where she said that she was unmarried. When I had a private investigator do a full background check, that turned out to be a untrue. When I confronted her with the FACTS, she made up lie number two, saying she was separated. When I confronted her again with the Private Investigators proof she was indeed married and living with her husband, Chris, next came lie number three, i.e., that they lived in separate bedrooms on opposite sides of their home “for their children’s sake.” The lies continued, but the bottom line is she made 5 trips from Seattle to San Francisco, LA, Miami and elsewhere with me, all first class, each time staying in 5 star hotels, all on my dime, and of course all the while trying to hustle me for money. My opinion, her and her companie(s) (note I say companies because in year 1 she was BioTrove Investments, by year 2 she’s now Bioviva. What will next year bring?, my vote is on BioScam). I have emails and texts from her saying how special I am to her, etc., etc. But as soon as I cut the money off, she was gone. Personally I’ve had an amazing life and have no desire to live forever. I consider that to be hubris at its strongest. The fact is the most advanced work in this area is being done by MIT’s Dr. Lenny Guarente, one of the world’s leading scientists in the field of aging research. He’s being advised by five Nobel Prize winners and two dozen other top researchers in this field. I don’t see ANY Nobel Prize Winners on BioTrove or BioViva’s or BioLiz’s board, just a long list of quacks and de-certified M.D.’s like Jason Williams, who was a Dr. in the US, but not specializing in biology or chemistry, he was a Radiologist, and not much of one as you can read here,…/precision-stemce…/

    If you’re truly interested in the cutting edge work in this field, try reading this…/one-of-the-worlds-top-aging-re… In my opinion she’s a scammer and I believe the reason she will not release any further information is we will find the entire fiasco was financed by others just like me. Just look at the Dr. who oversaw the procedure, it’s our old pal Jason Williams, he with the degree in Radiology. When the FDA shut him down, he moved to Colombia. The one thing I will agree with is Liz Parish is a very attractive woman, making her very persuasive when she wants to be. Don’t they have a name for excepting money whilst using your good looks? She has NO advanced degree in science whatsoever, no MD, no PhD, no degrees in biology or chemistry, shes not even an LPN. Beyond that, when I went out of my way using long cultivated contacts to get her into UC Irvine’s Stem Cell Laboratory for a private tour and meeting she embarassed me by scoffing at pluripotent stem cell research and therapy. I had a meeting with Craig Venter arranged also, but when I was able to use my contacts to get her a meeting with stem cell pioneer Neurobiologist Dr. Hans Kierstaad, she scoffed at his work too.…/124-million-… Between this, my lost money and the fear of further embarrassment in front of Venter, I decided to cut her off after one more try. I flew her from Seatle to San Francisco to Florida and back, first class of course, put her up in yet another 5 star hotel and when she told me she was going shopping for the day before catching a flight home, I discovered she never caught her plane, but instead she went to the life extension offices in Boca Raton. At this point, this being a $10,000.00 trip I sent her packing for good. Funny thing, since the money stopped and the access to the REAL scientists stopped, she’s now refused to return an e-mail in order to have an intelligent discussion or debate on the topic, which as we all know is a major part of the protocol in breaking through to new technologies. Apparently Dr Parrish, excuse me, Nurse Parrish, whoops wrong again, Sugarbabby Parrish disagrees. Interviewed numerous times about her home and family have you noticed SugarBaby Liz still refuses to answer if she is married. She immediately removed ALL the pictures and references to Chris and her two children from her Facebook page. IMHO this is a scam, all about money. Who would you trust, a Dr. Whose worked at MIT in this field for 34 years, or someone with NO advanced degree in any form of medicine, biology, chemistry, or for that matter NO experience in ANY research in any field. Don’t say you weren’t warned. The procedure performed on Ms. Parrish in Colombia is known to cause cancer in mice, imagine what it will do in humans? Here are but 2 of 8,000 results confirming the danger of this scam found on a PubMed search.