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A Seattle-Based Longevity Company, Formed from the Mergers of Three Startups, is Set to Become a Publicly Traded Business Through a Spac

Cam Speck



A Seattle-Based Longevity Company, Formed from the Mergers of Three Startups, is Set to Become a Publicly Traded Business Through a Spac (Special Purpose Acquisition Company)

Longevity, a Seattle-based startup, is entering the field of longevity biotech by acquiring assets from NovoKera and Cancer Prevention Pharmaceuticals. Three key companies are at the heart of the merger: Cerevast, with six employees; Denali Capital Acquisition Corp., whose CEO is Lei Huang; and US Tiger Securities, the investment bank behind the shell company. This development takes place amidst a challenging economic climate where only 25 biotech companies went public in 2021 and 48 through SPACs (Special Purpose Acquisition Companies). In 2022 alone, 55 SPAC transactions, such as Intrinsic Medicine’s deal, didn’t come to fruition.

The new startup has hired Anthony Lee as its chief operating officer and Brenda Sparks, formerly corporate controller at Cancer Prevention Pharmaceuticals, as its chief financial officer. Some of NovoKera’s employees may relocate to Seattle to join Longevity, which plans to hire more personnel with proceeds from the SPAC merger. The funds are expected to sustain them until 2025.

Longevity’s ultimate aim is to become a “one-stop shop for consumers of longevity-related products and services” and build out its product portfolio in low-to-middle-income countries. Led by CEO David Zakes, formerly executive at ICOS Corporation (acquired by Eli Lilly for $2.3 billion) and president/CEO of ImaRx Therapeutics (whose assets later became Cerevast), they are hoping to take advantage of their unique set of technologies, including transcranial ultrasound which could be used in stroke treatment and gas-filled microspheres which can help break up clots in retinal vein occlusion treatments amongst other applications like soft tissue reconstruction or biosynthetic cornea replacements.

To achieve these goals, Longevity plans on using any cash flows generated from the SPAC merger to complete a phase 3 study on a possible stroke therapy candidate, ongoing phase 2 studies on retinal vein occlusion treatment & soft tissue reconstruction candidates, as well as preclinical studies involving biosynthetic corneas. It will also look at additional partnerships to further build out its portfolio directly and indirectly related to longevity solutions for consumers worldwide.

This news comes at an interesting time when giant players such as Altos Labs ($3 billion investment) & Alphabet’s Calico Life Sciences have already established themselves firmly within this space. Nevertheless, it remains unclear exactly how much competition Longevity will face in terms of market share or what kind of impact its presence may have over time. Still, suppose all goes according to plan. In that case, consumers may have access to more innovative approaches toward longevity solutions going forward into 2025 or beyond, depending on how successful this SPAC-backed venture turns out to be.

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