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‘I don’t necessarily expect it to work’


Billionaire tech investor Peter Thiel confirmed that he is signed up to be cryogenically frozen when he dies so that he can potentially be revived in the future – even though he is skeptical that the technology actually works.

Thiel, who has an estimated net worth of $8.13 billion according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, spoke candidly about the life-preserving possibilities of so-called “cryonics” during an appearance on journalist Bari Weiss’s podcast on Wednesday.

“Is it true that you’re signed up to be cryonically preserved when you die so that you might be brought back to life in the future?” Weiss asked.

“Yes, but I think of it more as an ideological statement,” Thiel said.

“So it’s true?” Weiss replied.

“Sure. I don’t necessarily expect it to work, but I think it’s the sort of thing we’re supposed to try to do,” Thiel responded.

Weiss then pressed Thiel on whether he has signed up any loved ones to be frozen.

“I’m not convinced it works,” Thiel added. “It’s more, I think we need to be trying these things. It’s not there yet.”


Peter Thiel is one of many figures investing in anti-aging technology.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Thiel, 55, built his initial fortune as a co-founder of PayPal. He was the first outside investor in Facebook and an original partner in the venture capital firm Founders Fund.

He’s also a prominent Republican donor – and expressed in the same podcast interview with Weiss that he planned to support Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for the GOP’s 2024 presidential nomination.


Cryonics
Thiel is skeptical that cryonic technology will actually work.
AFP via Getty Images

Thiel’s interest in cryonics and other anti-aging technologies has been well-documented. In 2014, the tech billionaire told The Telegraph that he had signed up to be preserved after death by the biotech firm Alcor.

“In telling you that I’ve signed up for it [cryogenics], there’s always this reaction that it’s really crazy, it’s disturbing,” Thiel told the outlet. “But my take on it is it’s only disturbing because it challenges our complacency.’


Peter Thiel
Peter Thiel is worth more than $8 billion.
Roger Askew/The Oxford Union/Shutterstock

Alcor describes its cryonic work as the “practice of preserving life by pausing the dying process using subfreezing temperatures with the intent of restoring good health with medical technology in the future.”

Thiel isn’t the only prominent tech figure spending money on life extension technology. OpenAI CEO Sam Altman – whose firm created the ChatGPT chatbot – recently invested $180 million in a firm Retro Biosciences that is aiming to extend the human lifespan by 10 years, MIT Technology Review reported.

Another Silicon Valley figure, software developer Bryan Johnson, has gained notoriety for spending millions of dollars per year on an “anti-aging protocol.” Johnson, 45, claims his costly effort has given him the body of an 18-year-old.



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