INTRODUCING KRYOS, INC --A NEW CRYONICS SERVICE PROVIDER
-By Mike Darwin and E. Shaun Russell
WHERE WE ARE NOW
Nearly three years ago I made public a decision I had been considering since
1997: to leave an active role in cryonics and focus exclusively on research.
I made this decision for the following reasons:
First, I felt despair at the prospects for the progress and long term
survival of any cryonics organization offering quality services. For nearly
30 years I had watched as one cryonics organization after another
experienced the same failure mode, namely the triumph of expediency and
"economy" in patient care over quality. It became apparent to me that the
principal reason for this problem was that the fundamental premise of
cryonics contained the seeds of its own destruction. If it was indeed
impossible to prove that a given treatment method was good or bad, or was
incapable of being reversed by advanced technology which might emerge over a
period of many centuries, then sloppy, inexpensive or expedient methods of
preservation would necessarily out-compete better methods.
In fact, it becomes impossible to tell what "better" is, if there are no
standards of reference. When a patient has a conventional medical treatment
there are many good standards of reference. Survival and good recovery of
the patient in real-time is arguably the best! The rates of survival,
complications, and other measures of outcome are also quantifiable in
real-time for almost all medical procedures. This is true for almost all of
medicine and technology, and even the commercial world as well. Usually
sooner, rather than later, a bad approach is weeded out. This is the essence
of the scientific method. It has given all the technological riches we enjoy
today. This success is utterly dependent upon feedback about the worth of
each and every intervention in terms not only of gross outcome, but also in
terms of cost effectiveness. Unfortunately, there is no such feedback in
cryonics. What's worse, desperate people with limited resources are
especially liable to buy hope at a cost they can afford...regardless of
whether that hope is rooted in any real evidence.
It became clear to me that what was needed were major advances in ischemia
(resuscitation) and cryopreservation technology which would serve as an
objective means of validating the techniques being used. Better still would
be reversible or nearly reversible brain cryopreservation which would then
serve as the standard against which all human cases should be weighed.
Similarly important would be to truly validate that 15 to 30 minutes of
arrested circulation at normal body temperature was compatible with full
recovery of memory and personality. This is of great importance since, even
with vastly improved cryopreservation techniques, time delays until the
start of cryonics procedures of this length after legal death was pronounced
could be routinely expected. We needed to be certain that these kinds of
ischemic intervals could be reversed and that it would be possible not only
to deliver better methods of cryoprotection under these adverse
circumstances, but that we were really preserving the essence of the
patient: his or her memory and personality.
Now, for the first time in its history, I believe that cryonics technology
has reached the point where it may be possible to foresee revival and
recovery of patients treated under optimum conditions today (i.e., those who
are still relatively young and do not have primary brain disease) within as
little as 20 years from now. This is not being done, and the implications of
this are staggering on two fronts:
First, the number of lives that can be saved using cryonics with a high
degree of assurance and without the development of "contingent" and
hard-to-predict advanced technologies (such as a fully mature
nanotechnology) is greatly expanded.
Second, and following from the above, is a greatly expanded market for
cryonics services. Even under the current adverse conditions, the Cryonics
Institute is treating approximately one patient per month. Other cryonics
organizations turn away a much higher number of qualified, at-need cases.
Clearly, even in the absence of improved public perception of what cryonics
has to offer, the tide has started to turn.
WHERE WE COULD BE
Over the past 6 months I, and a number of other people both long involved
with and new to cryonics have been systematically planning to launch a
cryopreservation company that can achieve the objectives I have outlined in
the paragraphs above. The successful creation of such a company would
provide an alternative for those of you who still want the very best, but
feel you have not been able to find it in existing cryopreservation
facilities. We are now pleased to announce that this company has been
incorporated under the name Kryos Inc., and that we have leased a nearly
ideal building for the purpose of human cryopreservation services in
Southern California. As opposed to other cryonics organizations, our focus
will be on at-need and non-US members and patients. For those of you who
are interested in pre-need arrangements, you will be able to make them
through any cryonics organization that chooses to contract with us or
through Kryos itself. Currently, ACS is working with us to provide services
to its members.
When I left Critical Care Research I retained ownership of virtually all of
the equipment required to deliver the highest quality cryonics services
before the advent of vitrification technology. This constitutes an enormous
volume and variety of equipment, the replacement cost of which I estimate to
be on the order of $850,000. Thus, much of the incredibly capital-intensive
work of starting a cryonics services company has been done. This is not to
underestimate what lies ahead, though it greatly decreases part of the burden.
If you are interested in our activities I invite you to contact us. Due
primarily to financial constraints, what we are trying to do has some odds
against success. Despite the enormous technological strides made in
cryonics-related research over the past few years, there have rarely been
more obstacles to applying them. Saul Kent, once a mainstay of support is no
longer willing to provide financial support without solid evidence of a
broad based willingness of others to do the same. To the best of my
knowledge this applies to all cryonics efforts... not just those of Kryos.
Frankly, not only do I not blame Saul for this position, I *champion* it.
For too long others have taken for granted that Saul and Bill Faloon will
pay the way for them. I know this is true because at the end, even I took it
for granted. In our current situation, Saul has stated that he will
contribute funding to this project, though at this point I would prefer to
find other financial means before this is even considered.
Despite some of the events of the past, I have proven to be reliable, honest
and effective in the projects with which I have been involved. Though
failures of cryonics institutions (both with and without my involvement)
have done much to damage the credibility of the technology of cryonics in
general, I strongly believe that cryonics can be made both viable and
credible as an alternative to certain death. Currently, I have assembled a
team which is willing to do whatever is necessary to make this project a
reality. As mentioned above, we have recently incorporated under the name
Kryos Inc. and have leased a facility accordingly. We have also received
significant support from the American Cryonics Society (ACS) as well as from
CryoCare founding member Bob Kreuger. It is very clear that their
perspective on what should be possible is equivalent to mine. They believe,
as I do, that Kryos has the potential to become the leading provider of
human cryopreservation services, and an equivalent or preferable alternative
to the other facilities currently in existence.
For those of you who want *more* --for those of you who want to see the
dream fulfilled of fully reversible suspended animation within the next two
decades, and continued solid improvement in the techniques and conditions
under which cryonics patients are treated until then, I invite you to
contact Kryos Inc. via myself at email@example.com or (909) 276-8492 or E.
Shaun Russell at firstname.lastname@example.org. We welcome any and all questions and
comments you may have.
CEO and Director, Kryos Inc.
E. Shaun Russell
COO and Director, Kryos Inc.
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