X-Message-Number: 27983
Date: Tue, 23 May 2006 19:25:43 -0700 (PDT)
From: Doug Skrecky <>
Subject: the lastest paper from 21st Century Medicine

Rejuvenation Res. 2006 Summer;9(2):279-91.
Cryopreservation of complex systems: the missing link in the
regenerative medicine supply chain.
Fahy GM, Wowk B, Wu J.
21st Century Medicine, Inc., Rancho Cucamonga, California.
Transplantation can be regarded as one form of "antiaging medicine"
that is widely accepted as being effective in extending human life.
The current number of organ transplants in the United States is on
the order of 20,000 per year, but the need may be closer to 900,000
per year. Cadaveric and living-related donor sources are unlikely
to be able to provide all of the transplants required, but the gap
between supply and demand can be eliminated in principle by the
field of regenerative medicine, including the present field of
tissue engineering through which cell, tissue, and even organ
replacements are being created in the laboratory. If so, it could
allow over 30% of all deaths in the United States to be
substantially postponed, raising the probability of living to the
age of 80 by a factor of two and the odds of living to 90 by more
than a factor of 10. This promise, however, depends on the ability
to physically distribute the products of regenerative medicine to
patients in need and to produce these products in a way that allows
for adequate inventory control and quality assurance. For this
purpose, the ability to cryogenically preserve (cryopreserve) cells,
tissues, and even whole laboratory-produced organs may be
indispensable. Until recently, the cryopreservation of organs has
seemed a remote prospect to most observers, but developments over
the past few years are rapidly changing the scientific basis for
preserving even the most difficult and delicate organs for
unlimited periods of time. Animal intestines and ovaries have been
frozen, thawed, and shown to function after transplantation, but
the preservation of vital organs will most likely require
vitrification. With vitrification, all ice formation is prevented
and the organ is preserved in the glassy state below the glass
transition temperature (T(G)). Vitrification has been successful
for many tissues such as veins, arteries, cartilage, and heart
valves, and success has even been claimed for whole ovaries. For
vital organs, a significant recent milestone for vitrification has
been the ability to routinely recover rabbit kidneys after cooling
to a mean intrarenal temperature of about -45 degrees C, as verified
by life support function after transplantation. This temperature is
not low enough for long-term banking, but research continues on
preservation below -45 degrees C, and some encouraging preliminary
evidence has been obtained indicating that kidneys can support life
after vitrification. Full development of tissue engineering and
organ generation from stem cells, when combined with the ability to
bank these laboratory-produced products, in theory could
dramatically increase median life expectancy even in the absence
of any improvements in mitigating aging processes on a fundamental

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