X-Message-Number: 23062
Date: Tue, 09 Dec 2003 10:08:08 -0700
From: Mike Perry <>
Subject: Alcor Policy on Cell Storage

The following from the Dec. 7 _Alcor News_ ( 
http://four.pairlist.net/pipermail/alcornews/2003/000022.html) should 
answer the question raised recently by Randy Wicker about Alcor's policies 
relating to cell storage.

Cell Storage [by Tanya Jones, Chief Operating Officer, Alcor Life Extension 

Dr. Mike Perry brought a Cryonet message to my attention the other day 
where Alcor policy was questioned. 
(http://www.cryonet.org/cgi-bin/dsp.cgi?msg=22945). In it, Randy Wicker 
quoted Mike at length as to how most cryonicists do not consider a DNA 
sample to be a successful or sufficient cryopreservation. When he implied 
that this attitude is reflected in Alcor's policy, Mr. Wicker was correct. 
To my knowledge, no one at Alcor believes a twin is an adequate 
representation of a person who lived, loved, learned and eventually was 
cryopreserved. We'll save the limited representation of a cell sample, if 
that is all that can be saved, but we prefer much greater 
completeness--there should at least be substantial brain structure. Mr. 
Wicker continues, "The issue is why Alcor (in particular) but not Cryonics 
Institute refuses to allow members the option of saving their cells for 
possible future cloning."

One point to make is that Alcor _requires_ that its _members_ be signed up 
for cryopreservation, a policy not necessarily followed in other 
organizations. (Each organization will, of course, have its own 
requirements and policies which a prospective member--however the 
organization chooses to define it--must investigate.) Again, to be "signed 
up for cryopreservation" with Alcor it is not sufficient merely to have 
arrangements to store a cell sample. Alcor does, however, encourage its 
members to deposit a DNA sample in its dewars, and we even went so far as 
to send out sample kits to all our members some years back. There are 
hundreds of those samples logged and stored in our vaults. Granted, perhaps 
we have been somewhat remiss in the follow-up for our newer members, but 
the issue is not that we _refuse_ to store those cells. The issue is 
instead that we refuse to represent cloning as sufficient for successful 

Custody of cell samples, pet or otherwise, remains with the Owner. That 
Owner must be an Alcor member (again, signed up for cryopreservation), but 
the Owner has the option to decide what is done with stored property. The 
bottom line here is that the Owner can use the sample for cloning, but that 
Alcor will not.

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