Rabbit's Brain Cryogenically Frozen Successfully

A rabbit's brain has been successfully frozen for the first time; note, however, that the rabbit has not been questioned about it nor has the brain been successfully revived.

Researchers from 21st Century Medicine (21CM) used a new technique called Aldehyde-stabilized cryopreservation that filled the vascular system of the rabbit brain with chemicals that would allow it to be cooled to -211 degrees Fahrenheit (-135 degrees Celsius). During this process, the cell membranes, synapses, and intracellular structures remained intact.

“The brain was able to be sliced and viewed in an electron microscope which suggested that all the connections had been preserved,” Michael Cerullo, a psychiatrist at the Brain Preservation Foundation, tells Newsweek.

The current process used to cryogenically preserve human brains has been criticized for causing massive dehydration to the brain and crushing neural connections. It is believed that this process is too damaging to allow for successful future revival.

“Every neuron and synapse looks beautifully preserved across the entire brain,” Kenneth Hayworth, a neuroscientist who served as one of the prize’s judges, said in a press release. “Simply amazing given that I held in my hand this very same brain when it was vitrified glassy solid.”

This short video gives a good start at recent movie references, like Demolition Man, the 1993 movie with Sly Stallone and Wesley Snipes.

(Rabbit brain cryopreservation)

Fans of the wonderful Frederik Pohl may recall the corpsicle from his 1966 novel The Age of the Pussyfoot.

The oldest treatment of the "corpsicle" idea in science fiction is from The Senator's Daughterr, by Edward Page Mitchell, published in 1879:

"Have you ever seen," he asked, "a woman who has undergone what you propose to undergo? She went into the Refuge, perhaps, as you will go, fresh, rosy, beautiful, full of life and energy. She comes out a prematurely aged, withered, sallow, flaccid body, a living corpse- a skeleton, a ghost of her former self. In spite of all they say, there can be no absolute suspension of animation. Absolute suspension would be death. Even in the case of the most perfect freezing there is still some activity of the vital functions, and they gnaw and prey upon the existence of the unconscious subject.
(Read more about the frigorific process)

Via Newsweek.

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