A biotech CEO -- who once injected himself with an unproven herpes treatment -- was reportedly found dead Sunday in the sensory deprivation tank of a Washington, D.C., spa.
Aaron Traywick, 28, was discovered in a salt-filled flotation therapy tank, a family member told two of his associates at Ascendance Biomedical, according to VICE News.
An investigation was launched Tuesday into Traywick’s death but no foul play is suspected, D.C., police told The New York Post.
“Aaron was a passionate visionary. He seemingly never tired as he brought people together to work on some of the most imposing challenges facing humanity,” Tristan Roberts told VICE News in a statement. “While many in the biohacking scene disagreed with his methods, none of them doubted his intentions. He sought nothing short of a revolution in biomedicine; the democratization of science and the opening of the flood gates for global healing.”
The spa where Traywick was found dead uses a form of flotation therapy that involves a person lying in a sensory deprivation pool filled with Epsom salt to allow the person to float, according to the Daily Mail.
Traywick was the CEO of Ascendance Biomedical, which states on its website that it makes “cutting edge biomedical technologies available for everyone.”
He was thrust into the spotlight in February after he injected himself with an untested gene-altering herpes treatment he co-created at a biohacker conference in Texas, according to Live Science. He pulled a similar stunt in October 2017 when he injected himself with an untested HIV treatment.
Traywick, even with his sudden rise to prominence, had lost touch with his colleagues over the last month, Aaron Stuermer, a researcher, told VICE News. Traywick reportedly had several disagreements about Ascendance Biomedical's direction.
"The future is difficult to predict. He was willing to go where lots of people were afraid to go,” Stuermer said. “I don't have the perfect answer to this, but stuff will go on."