Hippocampal Slice Project Update

Paul Wakfer (wakfer@gte.net)
Wed, 08 Jul 1998 03:29:39 -0400

The Hippocampal Slice Project (HSP) is a joint research effort by The Institute for Neural Cryobiology (INC) and a research institute affiliated with a major Southern California university medical center (RI), which seeks to successfully cryopreserve (most likely by vitrification) rat hippocampal slices, and after rewarming, have them exhibit full functionality (including the propagation of evoked nerve activity along axons from neuron to neuron across the rewarmed brain slice). The HSP seeks to accomplish this, and to demonstrate its success by methods which will be applicable to whole brains, with the additional advances necessary to allow the perfusion of the cryoprotectant mixtures, and the induction of the cooling/warming rate protocols which the HSP shows will allow successful reversible cryopreservation. For more details see: http://neurocryo.org

The project has achieve full committee and contractual approval by both parties and is currently in the funding, staffing, and equipment procurement phase. The funding plans call for approximately $75,000 to be contributed by RI with the option to allocate an additional $25,000 as needed. This money from RI is already available to the project's Principal Investigator. INC is to contribute approximately $78,000 worth of equipment for the specialized needs of the project.

Currently, INC has raised a total of $44,000 for this purpose, either in the bank or on its way. The most advanced and expensive piece of equipment, a PCI2000 Motionscope image recording system costing
$25,500.00 capable of recording 8,000 frames per second, has now been
ordered and other equipment orders will soon follow (up to the funds we have available). We are now at the stage where staffing plans cannot be finalized until we know when we can actually begin the project research. That, of course, cannot happen until all the equipment is in place, and in turn, that cannot happen until INC has the money to procure the equipment.

Trying to raise the funds for this project has been both disappointing and at the same time heartening. Is has been disappointing to see so few pledgers to the Prometheus Project come through with funding for this project which is a direct result of Prometheus. On the other hand, it has been heartening to have such large donations from Edgar Swank ($8,000) and Tim Freeman ($6,000), to have several people donate who were not Prometheus pledgers, John Bull ($1,000) and Kevin Brown ($500), to have checks arrive unannounced from totally unknown (to me) people, Claude & Melinda Young ($500), and finally, to have our first donation for someone outside of the US or Canada, Stephen Whitrow from the UK ($500). I wish also to make special mention of Keith Lynch and Mark Mugler both of whom sent a *second* $1,000 contribution.

Since I, personally, no longer have the liquid assets to place toward this project, I have devised a method to use some of the few assets which I have left after my 6+ years of cryonics activities, which I hope may be sufficient to attract the remaining funds needed for the HSP. Here is my proposal.

For each donation of $5,000 or more to INC for the HSP, I will give the donor an option to purchase shares in 21st Century Medicine from me at any time after those shares become salable, for $10 per share, up to the total of the donation amount. At this price, my share holdings in 21CM are sufficient to cover all the rest of the money which needs to be raised for the HSP. Since 21CM is planning a share offering within the next year (possibly before the end of this year) which is virtually certain to be at a minimum of $10 per share, with minimum size purchase of at least $10,000, I believe that my offer should be attractive to those who have always wanted to *invest* in cryonics research rather than donate. To be fair, I must also extend this offer to Edgar Swank, Tim Freeman and Roy Yowell, the three people who have already donated
$5,000 or more.

I thank you for your attention and I look forward to your response.

wakfer@gte.net Voice/Fax: 416-968-6291 Page: 800-805-2870 The Institute for Neural Cryobiology - http://neurocryo.org Perfected cryopreservation of Central Nervous System tissue for neuroscience research and medical repair of brain diseases