Alcor News

Alcor News

News Blog of the Alcor Life Extension Foundation

Cryonicists on “Can We Live Forever?”

On Wednesday, July 27th, 2011, a particularly interesting episode of “Through the Wormhole with Morgan Freeman” (Season 2) will air on The Discovery Science Channel at 10 pm ET/PT. The title of the program is “Can We Live Forever?”, and the show will feature not only biological approaches such as Alcor Scientific Advisory Board member Aubrey de Grey’s contribution and possibilities involving regeneration and DNA repair but also unusual approaches that include the possibility of uploading and even the possibility that people today might survive as vitrified brains with intact “connectomes” that can be either revived or uploaded in the future. For the latter topic, the crew visited 21st Century Medicine and interviewed Greg Fahy and filmed procedures in 21CM’s kidney and brain slice labs.

Case Summaries: A-1408 and A-2357

This past quarter, Alcor cryopreserved two of its members. The first member, A-1408, lived just north of the Tampa, FL area.  Alcor team members initiated a standby at the hospital for three days during the time the individual was listed as critical and medical providers anticipated that he might stop breathing.  The member stabilized and Alcor ended the standby while continuing to monitor the patient’s condition remotely.  When his medical condition deteriorated again, Alcor was on the verge of initiating a standby for another member and therefore decided to request Suspended Animation to provide the standby this time.

On the afternoon of the fourth day of the standby (May 26, 2011), the member was pronounced, stabilized and cooled on-site, followed by a field washout.  The transport commenced the next morning by commercial airlines and the patient was brought to Alcor with the surgical team at the ready.  After the neuro cryopreservation ensued, member A-1408 became Alcor’s 105th patient.

Alcor’s Arizona response team provided standby services twice at the home of A-2357 on the west side of the Phoenix valley, approximately 50 miles from Alcor in Scottsdale.  The first standby lasted six days before the member’s condition improved enough for the team to stand down.  While continuing to monitor the individual’s health through a very supportive hospice organization, the attending physician determined that it was time to restart the standby just a mere two weeks later.  On the second day of the standby, despite relatively strong vital signs, the member’s breathing became weaker until he finally just ceased to take a breath. The patient was pronounced on June 17, 2011.

At the prior request of the hospice physician, both she and a hospice nurse assisted Aaron Drake and Steve Graber in administering the medications, cooling and preparing the patient for transport.  They both followed the rescue vehicle back to Alcor so they could observe the procedure and see the facilities.  Being impressed with the overall process, the physician expressed the desire to provide services for future Alcor members.  This new relationship, along with the existing hospice that we have used in the past, will provide us with a stronger network of hospice options in the greater Phoenix area.  A-2357 is now Alcor’s 106th patient, being cared for as a neurocryopreservation patient.

Transport and Readiness Update

The Financial Times, based out of the U.K., ran a story in their ongoing series titled “The Job” where they focus on interesting and unique jobs around the globe. The journalist, Rhymer Rigby, takes readers through a variety of jobs in world industry to show some of the people behind the headlines. This month the article focused on the role of Alcor’s Medical Response Director, Aaron Drake.


Watch List
Alcor is currently monitoring 10 members with moderate to severe health conditions.  Of these, seven have some form of cancer, two have respiratory problems and one has advanced ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease).

Administrative Report (June 2011)

Membership Statistics
Alcor had 948 members on its Emergency Responsibility List.  Six memberships were approved, no memberships were reinstated, two memberships were cancelled and one member was cryopreserved.  Overall, there was a net gain of three members in June.

Applicant Statistics
Alcor had 44 applicants for membership.  Four new applicants were added, six applicants were converted to members and two applicants were cancelled resulting in net a loss of four applicants in June.

Information Packet Statistics
Alcor received 131 info pack requests in June. Seven were handed out during facility tours or from special request.  The average total of 120 info packs sent per month in 2011 compares to 199 in 2010. The full Information Packet is now available online.