Celliant Helps Athletes With Clinically-Proven Textile Increasing Blood Flow
Salewa Puez TirolWool Celliant Half Zip Jacket: Bends TirolWool, naturally warm, breathable and hydrophobic insulation from Imbotex, with Celliant to keep outdoor enthusiasts energized and warm all day long. Release date: Fall 2017 (PRNewsfoto/Hologenix, LLC)
Celliant, a product of Los Angeles-based tech company Hologenix that aims to effectively capture and utilize human body heat in order to produce noticeable health benefits, recently received a classification from the FDA that could help the company expand its reach.
Celliant, owned by Hologenix, LLC, began producing its now-patented, thermo-reactive mineral-based responsive textile technology in 2002 with the hope of recycling the body’s natural energy. The company refers to its tech as “solar panels for your body.”
The company’s product is able to help increase the user’s blood flow in real-time to the area covered by the garment. Celliant’s technology readmits far infrared energy back into the body.
“We are trying to connect the dots of three buckets of science,” Celliant co-founder and CEO Seth Casden said.
“First: the body gives off heat; second: certain naturally occurring minerals act as a sponge for that heat and absorb it and then give off infrared; third: the validation that infrared has many different health benefits.”
Celliant, a rebrand from the company’s first iteration, had worked with TaylorMade adidas on a golf shirt and Saucony for a compression recovery line. In 2010 and 2011, it landed its first big-time partnership with Reebok’s Zigtech line, which featured Peyton Manning and John Wall as spokesmen.
However, without the backing of an official organization, the company’s medical and health benefit claims often fell on deaf ears, especially with so many pseudoscience products on the market. This made it hard to expand and get its technology into the hands of more athletes.
So Celliant and Casden, who took over as CEO in 2008 after six years as a silent investor, began to look for ways to officially substantiate the scientific and medical claims. Eventually, they formed a science advisory board comprised of four experts. Dr. Michael Hamblin, of both the Harvard Medical School and The Wellman Center for Photomedicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, joined the board in 2010.
Dr. Hamblin, who earned his Ph.D. in organic chemistry, has worked at The Wellman Center — one of the worlds biggest photo medicine facilities — for over 25 years. As one of the foremost experts of light-based medicine, including infrared, he began to help Celliant prove its technology really worked and improved human health.
“Medical devices and wearable technology can often perform just as well as drugs, and they generally have much fewer side effects,” Dr. Hamblin said.
“But, intuitively, by wearing something, most people do not believe it will affect their physiology. So you have to convince them.”
After roughly eight years of testing and nine different clinical studies, at institutions such as the University of California Irvine and Loyola University Chicago, the Food and Drug Administration officially classified Celliant products as “medical devices and general wellness products” beacuse they are clinically proven to “temporarily promote increased local blood flow at the site of application in healthy individuals.” It was also proven to be a non-significant risk product.
Celliant-based products use the human body’s natural conduction and convection heat and turn it into IR, which is a natural vasodilator, to help increase blood flow to tissue and muscles. The process is proven to help increase energy and endurance, improve muscle performance, and help improve recovery time. Celliant tech can also help improve sleep and has been shown to increase tissue oxygen levels by up to eight percent within the area that the garment contacts.
The company’s technology can be infused in almost any fabric from cotton to Spandex and used in everything from wetsuits to ski boots. “Celliant is similar to Gore-Tex in the sense that we license our technology to brands, and they promote and use it how they wish,” Casden said.
“Our embedded technology is not a spray or a treatment, and it lasts the lifetime of the material it is infused with. It will not wear off or lose it effectiveness.”
The Great Britain Rowing Team currently uses Celliant-based leggings and compression socks by Kymira to help speed up muscle recovery time during and after workouts. Celliant is also used by Toronto-based active wear company Titika as well as many others. Ski boot maker Tecnica and outdoor clothing company Salewa are set to introduce Celliant-infused items in the fall.
“It is kind of impossible to overdose on Celliant fabric, and for many other products or medicines this is not the case,” Dr. Hamblin said.
“And that’s one of the big attractions. If you wore a whole body Celliant suit 24/7 the benefits just build up.”
The company thinks that the FDA’s designations of Celliant as a medical device will truly be a launching pad. The CEO understood that without this official stamp of approval and the backing of experts such as Dr. Hamblin, his company would have a much harder time expanding.
Now, Celliant and its CEO hope to grow the business and begin to infuse their technology in as much clothing and athletic gear as possible. The company doesn’t see any reason why its tech will not eventually be woven into the fabric of professional sports from training rooms to official team uniforms.
“When head trainers see that there is a wearable product that can increase blood flow, they are going to want their athletes to have it,” Casden said. “We can be in everything from car seats to pajamas to yoga wear to golf tech. It’s very hard to overstate the possible applications.”
Further down the line, the company hopes to expand beyond healthy individuals and athletes into direct medical treatment for conditions such as diabetes.