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It is not a movie, it is not a game, today we can talk about human hibernation in real terms and, if you have a bank account with many zeros, you may even think you are one of the next people to join the 400 or so who have already cryopreserved. When he chooses human hibernation, the idea is then that of to be awakened in the future hoping that in the meantime a new particular cure or the secret to eternal life has been discovered.
There are currently three companies active in the field e requests for human hibernation come in the thousands, it is not prohibited, the only thing that the law prescribes is to respect an observation period of 24 hours from cardiac arrest, then the corpse can be prepared to proceed. The only, but important, precaution to prevent it from decaying concerns the temperature: it must be brought to -90 ° within half an hour of death to prepare it for hibernation.
Human hibernation and awakening
When you decide to freeze your body, you have high hopes for the future. Thinking that you were born in the wrong era and that the one that follows reserves some nice surprises in the medical field, including the right drug for us, we rely on frost to put our existence on a sort of "stand by".
The complex of practices and technologies needed to carry out this passage is called cryonics and aims to give us the possibility, with human hibernation, to come back to life later, when advanced scientific procedures will be able to guarantee excellent health.
To carry out a gradual but rapid lowering of the temperaturestep by step, a person must be dead, a legal declaration of death is required. The liquid nitrogen temperature must be reached within half an hour of death.
Does human hibernation exist?
It is clear that it exists, we have talked about it so far, certainly not only to reveal that it is the plot of a science fiction or dystopian film. For the more skeptical, however, here is a concrete and verifiable example. A while ago it made headlines a young Englishwoman who had asked to be hibernated. The High Court of London had to intervene to handle the case and with a ruling accepted the request for this 14 years old because, being a minor, there was to hear from the parents and if the mother agreed, the father did not. He aimed at a normal burial for his daughter. Eventually the girl was subjected to human hibernation in the USA.
It is not the first case of a person frozen in history, certainly this is a particular example also due to the age of the protagonist, but the first absolute case of human hibernation is that of the American James Bedford, professor of psychology at the University of California, frozen since 1967. It is still below zero and many have imitated it in the following years including well-known names such as baseball champion Ted Williams and Italian Giovanni Ranzo.
Human hibernation: cost
It costs tens of tens of thousands of dollars, it goes from 30 thousand to 200 thousand dollars, it costs a lot and the lowest price we read refers to the hibernation of the brain alone. Even that is expected and some choose it, because of the price, but not only.
Today I am providing this service 3 companies, one is located in Arizona and is a very popular and well-known "cryonics" foundation overseas where there is another, the Cryonics Institute, based in Detroit, finally the Russian alternative, born in 2006, the KryoRus. It is possible that other competing companies have been born or will be born but I doubt that prices will drop significantly. Human hibernation remains a practice for few, for those who can afford it and today the Italians who have been able and wanted to try it can be counted on the fingers of their hands.
Human hibernation: how it works
Let's see better how we proceed in reality, beyond what we may have read in novels or seen in films. As soon as the heart stops beating and human hibernation begins, must begin before brain death is declared. Proceed by replacing the blood with a particular substance to prevent the water from freezing in the cells, only at this point can bring the body to –196 degrees, liquid nitrogen temperature. The substance we have mentioned is a "Cryoprotectants", prevents the formation of ice during the cooling process and serves to avoid the risk of cell wall rupture.
A detail that some do not know, that it has a bit of the macabre or funny, depending on the point of view, is that human hibernation is carried out by holding the body upside down in the vessels of Dewar. It is a sort of insulating tanks filled with liquid nitrogen which serve to block the passage of heat.
Human hibernation and awakening
Today I am ongoing studies on the awakening phases and how a body can be brought back to life once it has been cryopreserved. In fact, therefore, those who pay to be frozen do not have the certainty of being then defrosted, they bet on research and hope that in the meantime a way will be found to resolve the issue. These are undoubtedly complex studies but many of the discoveries we take for granted today probably seemed mission impossible long ago.
If you don't have enough budget for your human hibernation but still want to experiment, you can opt for ice storage of the head only. It is neuro conservation, this, and is based on the idea that in decades we will understand how to clone new bodies in which to store hibernating brains.
To isolate the brain to be frozen, the head is cut off at the height of the seventh cervical vertebra, the whole skull is held and subjected to a gradual lowering of the temperature, always up to -196 °.
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