BioViva is a Bainbridge Island, Washington- based biotechnology company developing treatments to slow the aging process in humans.


BioViva was founded in 2015. [1] In early 2016, Sierra Sciences announced that they were working with BioViva to start a new medical tourism -based venture, BioViva FIJI, on Fiji and that they will be the first company to use gene therapy. treat biological aging in humans. [2] CEO Liz Parrish explains the reason for setting up in Fiji: “The current regulatory authorities have an outdated model that does not accommodate these new technologies.” [3] In June 2016, government sources in Fiji denied knowledge of the venture. [4]

BioViva released data gathered post-therapy in 2016, claiming that independent testing by SpectraCell Laboratories had revealed its long-range leukocyte telomere length from 6.71kb to 7.33kb, an amount they are equivalent to a reversal of 20 years of telomere attrition. The product of an increase in insulin sensitivity, an increase in muscle mass, a more favorable blood lipid profile and a reduction in C-reactive protein, a potent marker of inflammation. [5]

BioViva’s CEO Liz Parrish appeared on Norwegian television in the program Trygdekontoret to discuss the use of gene and cell therapies to improve health in an aging population. [6] Parrish also appeared on the Australian network ABC’s Lateline, discussing BioViva’s development of therapeutics to treat biological aging. [7]

Parrish appeared at WIRED Health 2017 in London to discuss BioViva’s testing of gene therapy targeting hallmarks of the aging process. Appearing in WIRED, Parrish stated, “The company was built to prove these therapies work or not. Remember BioViva is not a research organization. We are taking things like gene therapies and using them like technology. ” [8]


Parrish’s treatment, often labeled as self-experimentation , is highly controversial. As Parrish’s experiments , the US Food and Drug Administration did not authorize. Parrish traveled to Colombia for the treatments. [9]

Some have criticized BioViva’s release of data claiming an extension of Parrish’s leukocyte telomeres following her therapy, suggesting that the aforementioned extension is within the error for telomere measurements. Dr. Bradley Johnson, Associate Professor of Pathology and Lab Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, said, “Telomere length measurements typically have low accuracy, with variation in measurements of around 10 percent, which is in the range of reported telomere lengthening. Elizabeth Parrish. ” [10]

Altering the genetic makeup of humans, or gene therapy, by telometers has been described as dangerous, as the age is poorly understood. The telomeres’ function is to restrict the number of times to a cell can divide (thus multiplying) to suppress cancer. Duncan Baird, professor of Cancer and Genetics at Cardiff University’s School of Medicine states, “Meddling With A Fundamentally significant tumor suppressor mechanism That HAS Evolved in long-lived species like bears does not strike me as a PARTICULARLY Good Idea.” [ 9]

Timothy Caulfield, Faculty of Law and the School of Public Health at the University of Alberta, BioViva’s work as ‘ pseudoscience ‘ and lacking scientific rigor. George M Martin, professor of pathology at the University of Washington, has agreed to be a consultant to the company, residing on the subject of Parrish’s self-experiments. [9]

Antonio Regalado, reporter for the MIT Technology Review states, “The experiment seems likely to be remembered as a new low in medical quackery or, perhaps, the unlikely start of an era in which but to reverse aging . ” [11]

Parrish’s decision to be ‘patient zero’ and test the company’s technology in a personalised N = 1 study has been both criticized and lauded. Dr. Lawrence Altman, author of “Who Goes First? The Story of Self-Experimentation in Medicine “has said,” You’re not going to have a drug based on an N-of-1. ” [12]


BioViva’s technology is based on preclinical research of both telomerase enzyme and myostatin inhibition.

Telomerase gene therapy utilizing an adeno-associated virus undertaken by Maria Blasco’s group at the Spanish National Cancer Research Center (CNIO), has increased several times in the past. [13] Discussing her team’s research, Blasco has stated in discussion with The Scientist , “We have demonstrated that AAV9-Tert gene therapy is sufficient to delay age-related pathologies and extend both median and maximum longevity in mice. Many pathologies have been delayed, including cancer. These conditions may be related to certain diseases (telomere syndromes or certain age-related diseases without effective treatments).[14]

Myostatin inhibition gene therapy, utilizing the follistatin gene (a known inhibitor of myostatin), has been tested in a phase 1/2 trial on 6 people, for Becker’s muscular dystrophy. 4 of the 6 patients showed improvements in their ability to respond to the gene therapy, with some muscle growth especially in response to the higher dosage. [15]


  1. Jump up^ “Company Overview of BioViva USA Inc” . Bloomberg . Retrieved November 14, 2016 .
  2. Jump up^ Tayag, Yasmin (22 May 2016). “BioViva Plans an Age Reversal Clinic in Fiji as Medical Tourism Gets Weird” . Retrieved 24 July 2016 .
  3. Jump up^ Bainbridge, Bill (31 May 2016). ” ‘ Fountain of youth’ proposed clinic for Fiji called into question by Australian expert” . Retrieved 24 July 2016 .
  4. Jump up^ Pratibha, Jyoti (8 June 2016). “Authorities Deny Anti-Aging Clinic Being Set Up Here” . Retrieved 31 July 2016 .
  5. Jump up^ “Dual Gene Therapy Has Beneficial Effects On Blood Biomarkers And Muscle Composition” . BioViva USA Inc ™ . Retrieved 2017-03-31 .
  6. Jump up^ NRK TV – Se Trygdekontoret (in Norwegian) , retrieved 2017-03-31
  7. Jump up^ “Interview: Liz Parrish” . 2017-02-23 . Retrieved 2017-03-31 .
  8. Jump up^ Medeiros, João. “Gene therapy could be the ‘cure ‘ ” . WIRED UK . Retrieved 2017-03-31 .
  9. ^ Jump up to:c Nicola Davis; Dara Mohammadi (24 July 2016). “Can this woman cure aging with gene therapy?” . . The Guardian . Retrieved 1 August 2016 .
  10. Jump up^ “Liz Parrish Is Zero Patient in Her Own Anti-Aging Experiment – The Crux” . The Crux . 2016-04-29 . Retrieved 2017-03-31 .
  11. Jump up^ Regalado, Antonio (14 October 2015). “At Tale of Do-It-Yourself Gene Therapy” . . MIT Technology Review . Retrieved 25 July 2016 .
  12. Jump up^ “Biotech executives using themselves as human guinea pigs” . STAT . 2016-07-07 . Retrieved 2017-03-31 .
  13. Jump up^ Bernardes of Jesus, Bruno; Vera, Elsa; Schneeberger, Kerstin; Tejera, Agueda M .; Ayuso, Eduard; Bosch, Fatima; Blasco, Maria A. (2012-08-01). “Telomerase gene therapy in adult and old mice delays aging and increases longevity without increasing cancer” . EMBO Molecular Medicine . 4 (8): 691-704. doi : 10.1002 / emmm.201200245 . ISSN  1757-4684 . PMC  3494070  . PMID  22585399 .
  14. Jump up^ “First Data from Anti-Aging Gene Therapy | The Scientist Magazine®” . The Scientist . Retrieved 2017-03-31 .
  15. Jump up^ Mendell, Jerry R .; Sahenk, Zarife; Malik, Vinod; Gomez, Ana M .; Flanigan, Kevin M .; Lowes, Linda P .; Alfano, Lindsay N .; Berry, Katherine; Meadows, Eric (2015-01-01). “A phase 1 / 2a follistatin gene therapy trial for becker muscular dystrophy” . Molecular Therapy: The Journal of the American Society of Gene Therapy . 23 (1): 192-201. doi : 10.1038 / mt.2014.200 . ISSN  1525-0024 . PMC  4426808  . PMID  25322757.

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