Peter Thiel pledges $3.5 Million to antiaging research

Peter A. Thiel, co-founder and former CEO of online payments system PayPal, Founder and Managing Member of Clarium Capital Management, a San Francisco-based hedge fund, and angel investor in social networking site Facebook, has announced his pledge of $3.5 Million to support scientific research into the alleviation and eventual reversal of the debilities caused by aging, to be conducted under the auspices of the Methuselah Foundation, a charity co-founded and Chaired by Dr. Aubrey de Grey.
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“Freeze Me” Documentary to air Wednesday, Sept. 20th

A series called Naked Science on the National Geographic Channel will include a documentary entitled “Freeze Me” about a patient recently cryopreserved by the Alcor Foundation. The documentary is set to air on Wednesday, September 20th at 10pm EST.

Below is a link to additional air dates:

Christopher Polge Dies

Christopher Polge, who died on August 17 aged 80, attained scientific eminence at a remarkably early age: his discovery, whilst still a doctoral student, of how to preserve living cells and tissues at very low temperatures solved a long-standing and intractable problem in biology.

This breakthrough not only formed the basis for the new science of cryobiology but has also had profound and continuing practical implications for agriculture and medicine.

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Membership and Public Affairs

On August 31, 2006, Alcor had 809 members on its Emergency Responsibility
List. Four memberships were approved during this month, no memberships
were reinstated, no memberships were cancelled and no members were
cryopreserved. Overall, there was a net gain of four members this month.

121 info packs were mailed this month, 9 were handed out during facility
tours, making an average of 174 info packs sent per month in 2006 as
compared to 122 in 2005.

The 3rd quarter issue of Cryonics magazine has printed and will be mailed
the week of September 10.

Media in August
RAI documentary, Italy: Tanya Jones granted an interview to a production
company doing a one-hour documentary on the Posthuman era, investigating
how nanotechnology, cryonics, neural interfaces, stem cells research, and
psychopharmology will change human beings, and the ethical, philosophical
and religious implications.
Arizona Republic: Sergey Sheleg was interviewed for this local newspaper
with a focus on the relationship between his work at Alcor and his career
Biofutures: Owning Body Parts and Information, Duke University: A
professor at Duke University is developing a scholarly multimedia DVD-ROM
that explores key ethical issues that have emerged as a result of rapidly
changing relationships between commerce, human tissue, and biotechnology.

The purpose of the chapter on cryonics is to introduce students/readers to
the importance of “temporal manipulation” in laboratory settings. The
author’s goal is to show the continuity between Alcor and the kind of
biological research that goes on every major research institutions across
the U.S.

Training Update

Our most recent training session was held in southern California, with all
the regular members attending plus one new addition. Course curriculum
included our biohazard and communicable disease lecture, airway management
(including Combi-tube), medications, intraosseous IV placement training,
and manual cardiopulmonary support practice.

Our next stabilization training session will be held in Austin, Texas
later this month (September 23-24). We’ll be training both old and new
members of Alcor’s stabilization team, and are expecting to see a further
expansion of individuals available for standbys and stabilizations in this
newly-forming region.

We have also drafted our 2007 training schedule, which will continue our
policy of expanding into new regions. In addition to those regions
receiving training this year, (southern and northern California, Nevada,
Florida, Texas and the United Kingdom) we’re attempting to expand our
training program next year to include Australia, eastern and western
Canada, New England, and the Pacific Northwest.

We’re also scheduled to hold a Red Cross CPR class for local members and
anyone left in town after the upcoming conference. The class will be held
at the Alcor facility on Monday, October 9 at 10:00 am and will last about
four hours. Anyone interested in attending any of the upcoming training
sessions should RSVP to our Readiness Coordinator, Michelle Fry

Odds and Ends

Last Minute Cases
This month we have dealt with 2 possible last minute cases. Both of these
presented problems, one with significant post-mortem times, and so were
turned down. They were both “post mortem”. These sorts of call seem to
have the uncanny habit of coming on the weekend or late Friday. One of
the above mentioned calls came on Labor Day.

Wealth Preservation Trust Progress
We completed another round of answers on the draft for our trust attorney.
The draft should be made available for the Board and our local counsel
before the October conference. We’re still hoping to have one of the
presentations at the conference be on this wealth preservation issue and
the state of the trust development, but have not yet heard a definitive
answer. We’re holding a 30 minute speaking slot open for this purpose, and
should have an answer on this by the end of next week.

Pet Cryopreservation
The companion animal of one of our members was placed into our care when
the cat died suddenly. As is often the case with pet care, this was a
straight freeze; and the procedure was carried out with no complications.
Alcor now has 30 pets in its care.

Alcor Training Sessions

Location: Austin, Texas at the office of Steve Jackson at 3735 Promontory Point Drive,Austin, TX 78744
Date(s): September 23-24, 2006
Time(s): Training will be held from 9am-4pm both days. There will also be a Saturday evening dinner open to anyone interested in meeting Alcor members.
Location: Laughlin, Nevada at the Riverside Casino
Date(s): October 19-20, 2006
Time(s): Training will be held from 9am-4pm both days. There will also be an evening dinner on Friday, October 20th, open to anyone interested in meeting Alcor members.
Location: Northern California (Berkeley) at Café de la Paz, 1600 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709 (510-843-0662)
Date(s): November 11-12, 2006
Time(s): Training will be held from 9am-4pm both days. There will also be a Saturday evening dinner open to anyone interested in meeting Alcor members.
Location: United Kingdom at the home of Alan Sinclair, #4 Mt. Caburn Crescent, Peacehaven, E. Sussex, BN10 8DW UK
Date(s): May 5-7th, 2007
Time(s): Training will be held from 9am-5pm on Friday & Saturday, 9am-2pm on Monday. There will also be a Saturday evening dinner open to anyone interested in meeting Alcor members.
Contact Michelle Fry, Alcor Readiness Coordinator, to RSVP to either the training or the Saturday evening dinner:
(480) 905-1906, ext. 104

Engineering and Research Developments

Significant progress is being made in the construction and programming the new whole body perfusion system. Orders have been made with local contractors for components that will not be made in house.
This system represents a significant improvement both our current whole body clinical capability and our research prospects. In particular, improved data collection will increase our ability to learn from cases, and improved cooling will greatly reduce exposure to cryoprotectant at the higher temperatures at which it is most toxic. This is one of the projects mentioned in the fund raising letter for the Bina and Martine Rothblatt Matching Grant program, and would not be possible without their support and the support of all who made matching contributions.

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Annual Board Meeting Results

On Saturday, September 9, Alcor conducted its annual board meeting. All directors and officers were re-elected.

The results were as follows:
Board of Directors
Saul Kent
Jerry Lemler, MD
Ralph Merkle, PhD
Carlos Mondragon
Michael Riskin, CPA, PhD (Chairman)
Michael R. Seidl, PhD, JD
Stephen J. Van Sickle
Brian Wowk, PhD

President/Executive Director
Stephen J.Van Sickle
Vice President
Michael Riskin, CPA, PhD
Joseph Hovey

Reminder: Board Meeting Saturday, Sept 9

This Saturdy, we are having our annual general Board Meeting here at the Alcor facility in Scottsdale. Five of the eight Board members will be attending in person, so this is a great opportunity to meet them and grill them with your questions, comments, and concerns. The meeting begins at 11:00 am Arizona time, and lunch will be served.