A post from Paul Wakfer, a prominent cryonicist...

From: John M Grigg (starman125@lycos.com)
Date: Sun Aug 06 2000 - 01:48:05 MDT

Hello everyone,

This is a very fascinating post from cryonet which was written by prominent cryonicist Paul Wakfer. In terms of informing us what the current state of cryonics is along with some very interesting past history I would say all should read this. I greatly respect Paul for his noble Prometheus Project which failed for reasons he gives here. I am glad my friend is feeling good about life...


Message #14245
Date: Sat, 05 Aug 2000 04:52:55 -0400
From: Paul Wakfer <wakfer@gte.net>
Newsgroups: sci.cryonics
Subject: Re: #14229 - Where is a current summary?
References: <200008030900.FAA15701@rho.pair.com>

While 99% of CryoNet postings were busy with brain masturbation, the
following request for information about reality went totally unanswered:

> Message #14229
> From: RAMole@aol.com
> Date: Thu, 3 Aug 2000 02:23:11 EDT
> Subject: Where is a current summary?
> Greetings All:
> This is a request for a pointer to a site that summarizes the >current state-of-the-art.

There is no site where this is all summarized. The information is very
scattered, and/or not yet written down. This is mainly the result of the constant infighting which goes on in a fringe group like the world of cryonics, for control of the very small pond in which all these frogs are croaking to each other.

> Two or three years ago I found material which put me pretty well up on
> things.

Now where might you have found that? the Prometheus Project (PP)
website, perhaps?

> As I recall the overall status, vitrification was promising and it appeared
> crystalization might be prevented during freezing by using a high pressure
> chamber. However it tended to occur during thawing too unless very high thaw
> rates were used.

This was only an interim step during the research which Greg Fahy was
doing to reversibly cryopreserve kidneys. In fact, not only was it
always deemed impractical for whole body humans, but he very soon found that the pressure itself induced additional unrecoverable damage, and soon after abandoned the pressure approach.

> It was impossible to achieve such rates (and -- was there a
> uniformity problem with some regions remaining too cold?) [Is this still
> true?]

No. All those ideas have been superseded now. 21st Century Medicine (21CM) has developed ice blockers and new cryoprotectants which enable vitrification at high enough cryoprotectant (CPA) concentrations that recrystallization during thawing should be
avoidable at the rate of warming which can be reasonably achieved.

All of this has been hastened by the development by Critical Care
Research (CCR - a split-off of the original 21CM) of perfluorocarbon
perfusion methods which allow very rapid cooling and warming of whole
bodies even, right down to the vitrification holding temperatures

Basically, things are looking exceedingly optimistic that perfected
whole body suspended animation could be "just around the corner", if we could only get these short-sighted, head-in-the-sand, money-hoarding cryonicists to fork over the necessary cash. I hasten to add that my comments do not apply to those few wonderful, courageous, and fully rational people who have monetarily supported all the research to achieve these goals, and, of course, to the researchers themselves.
As it is, the work of proving out, completing development, and
perfecting the breakthroughs outlined above is ongoing, albeit at a very slow pace.

> Overall, everything from embryos to aortas could be frozen and thawed
> successfully, but nothing bigger.

Even embryos, sperm, and some other things were only viable because they could incur large ce

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