Geron in the news again

The Geron Corporation, a tiny biotech company with about 125 employees, has been back in the news again during the last few days – this time for receiving FDA clearance to begin the world’s first human clinical trial of an embryonic stem cell-based therapy.  The Phase I trial will involve 20 patients with acute spinal cord injury in seven major medical centers, the ultimate objective being to determine whether Geron’s proprietary oligodendroglial progenitor cells can safely regenerate spinal chord connections so as significantly to improve locomotor capability of the injured patients(ref).  The Geron stem cell line has been shown capable of safely doing that with mice.  Geron is also pursuing other stem cell development programs including use of proprietary osteoblasts for osteoporosis, hepatocytes for liver failure, cardiomyocytes for heart failure and pancreatic islets for diabetes.

In business since 1992, in its first years Geron focused heavily in the area of regenerative medicine and telomere science.  It has to its credit several basic patents related to telomere activation and gene therapy.   With its Hong Kong affiliate TA Theraputics, of which Geron is the majority owner,  Geron has identified several proprietary astragalus-based telomerase activators including TA-65 which is licensed to TA Sciences(ref) and TAT2 which is being pursued as a HIV therapy by TA Theraputics(ref).  The basic research related to the capabilities of astragaolside IV for telomerase activation (described and suggested as a firewall component in the Anti-Aging Firewalls treatise) was done by Geron and is disclosed in its telomerase activator patent application. 

In all its years of operation the company has consistently run at a loss, without a mainline drug product and betting on its possible science-based future. In recent years, I speculate to keep the wolf from the door and investors interested, Geron has focused on telomerase inhibition as a cancer therapy.  It has two proprietary drugs and a vaccine for this purpose in the clinical trials pipeline. Besides being strong in telomere science and gene therapy applications, the company is also strong in cloning technology, having acquired Bio-Med Limited in Scottland, the company that cloned Dolly the sheep. 

Owning Geron’s Stock is not for the faint of heart. I first purchased a small position in it back in 1998, yes because I had an interest in telomerase activation even back then.  I bought it for about 6, rode it up to about 70 in 2000, and then rode it all the way back down again as the biotech market boom fizzled  I currently have a small position in the stock.  The stock bottomed at around 2.5 in October 2008 and shot up with the news to over 8 yesterday.  I suspect it will continue to generate a wild ride.

About Vince Giuliano

Being a follower, connoisseur, and interpreter of longevity research is my latest career. I have been at this part-time for well over a decade, and in 2007 this became my mainline activity. In earlier reincarnations of my career. I was founding dean of a graduate school and a university professor at the State University of New York, a senior consultant working in a variety of fields at Arthur D. Little, Inc., Chief Scientist and C00 of Mirror Systems, a software company, and an international Internet consultant. I got off the ground with one of the earliest PhD's from Harvard in a field later to become known as computer science. Because there was no academic field of computer science at the time, to get through I had to qualify myself in hard sciences, so my studies focused heavily on quantum physics. In various ways I contributed to the Computer Revolution starting in the 1950s and the Internet Revolution starting in the late 1980s. I am now engaged in doing the same for The Longevity Revolution. I have published something like 200 books and papers as well as over 430 substantive.entries in this blog, and have enjoyed various periods of notoriety. If you do a Google search on Vincent E. Giuliano, most if not all of the entries on the first few pages that come up will be ones relating to me. I have a general writings site at and an extensive site of my art at Please note that I have recently changed my mailbox to
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