Cryogenics Companies Are Selling The Chance To Cheat Death For The Price Of A New Car

A body preparation room at the Cryonics Institute facility in Michigan. Photo credit: Cryonics Institute

Aliyah Kovner 14 Aug 2018, 00:08

People seek out wealth so that they can afford the finer things in life, and now, for the modest price of about $30,000, the rich may also be able to buy a second life.

As reported by Brinkwire, more and more people are making plans to have their bodies cryopreserved after death with the hopes of being revived in the future, when scientists have perfected the technique for reanimating frozen organic tissue and have cured the inconvenient conditions, like old age or cancer, that killed them in the first place.

Involving significantly more steps than just dumping someone in an extra-cold freezer, the current cryonic techniques begin by immediately cooling the body in question to just above the freezing point of water once the heart has stopped beating. Then, blood and air circulation are restored using various pumping devices, and a mix of chemicals and medications are infused into the veins and arteries.

Though the exact ingredients vary among different cryonics companies, these preservative cocktails may include free radical inhibitors, anticoagulants, nitric oxide synthase inhibitors, pH buffers, and other substances that help prevent tissue and DNA decay and maintain blood pressure.

Once the body has been stabilized, the most crucial compound – the vitrification agent – is perfused through the body, replacing the blood and other fluids. Because water molecules expand during crystallization, the freezing process will destroy animal tissue as the cells are ruptured from the inside out. Vitrification agents prevent this outcome by blocking the water molecules in cells from forming hydrogen bonds during freezing, leading to a solid state with no (or very few) damaging ice crystals, according to the Arizona-based cryonics “membership” company Alcor (whose minimum charge for whole-body preservation and storage is $200,000).

The deep freeze storage tanks at the Cryonics Institute in Michigan. Photo credit: Cryonics Institute
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