X-Message-Number: 15739
Date: Sun, 25 Feb 2001 12:22:36 EST
Subject: Grimes vs. facts

Again, mostly for the sake of late-comers:

Grimes says,

>I don't think I ever said that Robert Ettinger is dishonest. 

He said it several times in several slightly different ways, including 
repetitions of the term "cover-up." 


>I just said that his recent posts reveal that he knew nothing about the 
procedures of >another organization, and never bothered to ask, 

I have repeatedly asked Alcor and consultants for information, privately and 
publicly, and have repeatedly looked at Alcor's web site, which has been 
confusing until the last few days. In particular, a glycerol prodecure is 
described in the present tense (very recently modified a bit), and even one 
of Alcor's primary consultants was confused, as per a private message. I had 
assumed that the glycerol procedure was simply an outdated one, but after 
Hugh Hixon's postings I now understand that the glycerol procedure is still 
standard for Alcor's whole body patients, while the newer, secret procedure 
applies to neuro patients. Since the newer procedure is believed likely to 
yield better results, at least under favorable conditions, there is a 
suggestion that Alcor whole body members perhaps should switch to neuro.


>but went ahead and accused them repeatedly of doing things that were likely 
to >cause human damage to frozen people. He has not denied that he did 
>this. It is very clear.

Total baloney. I merely criticized Fred Chamberlain's article, "Vitrification 
Arrives!" as overreaching, and I stand by that. The Alcor people and their 
consultants are acting in good faith, but their guess that the current neuro 
procedure "probably" results in vitrification is based on theory and indirect 
evidence, even disregarding the fact that the current storage in liquid 
nitrogen is not the most appropriate for them, and disregarding the fact that 
real patients can hardly ever be treated under ideal conditions. 

We cannot verify Alcor's results, because the procedure is secret, and 
neither can anyone else. Beyond that, no one at all, anywhere, ever--not even 
Alcor's people or their consultants--has evaluated actual animal brains after 
subjecting them to Alcor's procedure and rewarming from - 196 C or even from 
- 130 C. Probably they will do such evaluations  in coming months, and then 
we will know a bit more. But CI uses only procedures that we ourselves have 
tested and that have been evaluated by unbiased professionals. 

For a bit of perspective, once more, remember that after half a century there 
are still disagreements about the best ways to cryopreserve very simple 
systems, such as blood or sperm. After hundreds or thousands of studies, 
there are still sharp disagreements about the effectiveness of vitamin C in 
various health conditions. Improvements are always desirable, but no one 
knows when or whether a particular improvement will be crucial, so one must 
always consider the trade-offs.


> why his organization doesn't even bother to test 
>the $99 ice blocker that might improve their preservation. 

As repeatedly mentioned, our understanding from Alcor consultants is that the 
ice blocker is useful only in conjunction with the secret and unavailable new 
CPA. Nevertheless, testing of several different kinds of ice blockers is on 
our agenda, although not our highest priority.

Robert Ettinger
Cryonics Institute
Immortalist Society

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