Only months after injecting himself with a homemade herpes treatment, Aaron Traywick, CEO of a biotech company, was discovered dead Sunday in Washington, D.C.
Traywick, who was part of the biohacking field (a sort of grassroots, do-it-yourself biology study movement), was discovered unconscious in a sensory deprivation flotation tank by staff of the advanced spa. The cause of death — whether it was the homemade herpes vaccine, him being in the isolation container or something else — is not yet known. His passing was first reported by BuzzFeed News, which obtained confirmation from Washington, D.C. police.
Traywick seemed to have a falling out with his partners and employees of his company just months ago. Supposed to display his work to documentary teams earlier in the year, Traywick instead came off as some sort of melodramatic quack, according to a report from Gizmodo. The film crew allegedly didn’t take long to realize that, and Traywick, upset by the unraveling of his showcase, wrestled for the keys of the lab they were situated in, and then locked and barricaded himself inside. He also changed the security credentials to the organization’s website so no one else could control or alter it, Gizmodo reported.
WATCH Traywick inject himself with his DIY herpes vaccine:
Tristan Roberts, a computer programmer who worked closely with Traywick, still championed the group’s work, saying it was real and legitimate, but also that “our CEO doesn’t have a firm grasp of the scientific realities.”
Despite his allegedly zany personality, others in the biohacking community still commend him for bringing awareness to the problem of slow or no access to experimental treatments.
“The first person who rode an airplane or a rocket or did something crazy — like, there’s a place for those people,” Josiah Zayner, a prominent peer and competitor, told BuzzFeed News. “I hope people don’t view Aaron and his life as a negative, because it did contribute and it did inspire people despite all the controversy.”
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