X-Message-Number: 28645
Date: Tue, 7 Nov 2006 08:50:01 -0800 (PST)
From: 2Arcturus <>
Subject: Suspended Animation (Prehoda)


I thought some others might find this interesting. It's a "flight of fancy" on a
possible method of radical life extension combining (in stages) human 
hibernation, chemical anabiosis, and suspended animation by Prehoda in his book 
Suspended Animation. 

  Although it's a really old book, he anticipates some current concerns of 
  cryonics (e.g., unique vulnerability of kidneys, and 'annealing' methods of 

  One week is spent taking care of professional and family affairs. You then 
  enter the elaborate hibernation center. Electrodes are taped to the skull and 

  skin areas near the heart. Other physiological measuring instruments will 
  monitor blood pressure and all important functions. Your left arm has a 

  artery shunt like that used twenty years before for prolonged treatment with 
  an artificial kidney. You lie down in your hibernaculum and the lid slides 

  An 80-percent xenon and 20-percent oxygen mixture produces unconsciousness. 
  Hibernation-inducing chemicals enter your body through the plastic shunt on 

  arm. The shunt also allows your blood to be removed and passed through an 
  artificial kidney (human kidneys do not function well during hibernation). The
  temperature drops to 2 C. Antabolone and other metabolic inhibitors that do 
  not affect the heart are injected to further reduce metabolic activity which 

  now 1/100th of normal. Unsaturated fats and other essential nutrients are 
  included in the intravenous mixture introduced into the body through the 
  artery shunt on the arm. 

  There is practically no electrical activity in your brain and you are in a 
  dreamless sleep. Your breathing is maintained artificially at a rate 
  automatically regulated by your carbon dioxide output. Chemicals which prevent
  the blood cells from clumping together are continuously injected into your 
  body. Your heart rate is reduced to 
  one or two beats a minute.

  Every 14 days your temperature is raised to 37 C for a few hours, so that the 
  energy stores within the cells can be replenished.

  Other cellular adjustments requiring a normal temperature can now take place. 
  During these brief periods at 37 C, the xenonoxygen gas mixture is turned back
  on, keeping you in an anesthetized state. After 9 months in hibernation, you 
  are brought back to normal and awakened. For the next 20 days you eat, 

  and are given treatments for your cancer and arteriosclerosis. Relatives and 
  close friends visit during the alert period. The twenty days of activity 

  your muscles and other body functions. You are then returned to your 
  hibernaculum for another 9 months of cold sleep.

  The 20-day awake cycles do not seem to be separated by 9-month intervals. To 
  the hibernaut they seem to be only one night apart. Many occupants of 

  in the center are relatively young and not suffering from serious diseases. 
  They want to see the somewhat distant future and also believe that aging will 
  brought under complete control sometime during the 21st century.

  You go through the 9-month-hibernation, 20-day-activity cycles from 1989 till 
  1994. Seven awake cycles have allowed you to keep mformed of world events and
  still know your rapidly-growing grandchildren. Suddenly you are awakened in a 
  strange room whIch appears to be an intensive care center. Your physician 

  you that arteriosclerosis in your coronary arteries caused your heart to cease
  functioning during hibernation. The center's supercomputer continuously 

  monitors the body functions of every hibernaut. A device which rhythmically 
  depresses the chest to cause blood to be pumped through the heart was 

  automatically activated. You are informed that your physicians decided after 
  exploratory surgery to implant an artificial heart. Apparently your blood did 
  not respond to the anti-clotting chemicals, and you will now be placed in 
  chemical anabiosis, which requires an artificial heart.

  Your new hibernaculum is a thick-walled hyperbaric chamber. The xenon-oxygen 
  mixture again produces unconsciousness. The pressure is increased to 45 psi. 

  blood is slowly removed from your arm and replaced with a cell-free plasma 
  which contains sufficient dissolved oxygen to meet all body requirements. It 

  cycled outside the body to remove carbon dioxide and other poisonous waste. 
  Powerful metabolic inhibitors are now injected into the body, stopping almost 

  metabolic activity. The pressure is raised to thousands of psi, allowing the 
  body temperature to be lowered several degrees below the O C freezing point of
  water at normal sea level pressure. The artificial heart pumps once every two 
  Every 30 days, the body temperature is raised to normal and the 

  metabolic inhibitors are discontinued, to permit necessary cellular 
  adjustments which must be made at 37 C. Anesthesia is maintained with 
  xenon-oxygen, and 

  after the super-computer has monitored physiological responses for a few 
  hours, the metabolic inhibitors are again injected and the temperature 
  returning you to a state of chemical anabiosis.

  Once a year you are revived for twenty days of normal physical activity. Tubes
  extend outside your chest, going under your arms to a 20-pound portable 

  backpack which powers your artificial heart. Your physical movements are 
  somewhat restricted. The skin areas where the artificial heart tubes enter the

  are potential sights of infection. During your active periods you are kept in 
  a pathogen-free room and can visit relatives only through a transparent 

  Five more years pass. It is now 1999. Seven hibernation cycles and five 
  chemical anabiosis cycles have allowed you to live eight years beyond your 

  expectancy in 1989. You are awakened and given a thorough medical examination.
  There are evidences of disease processes in parts of your body that could not
  have been detected by instruments available in 1989. Many organs would need to
  be transplanted. Again the chances of success are uncertain.

  There is a new alternative in 1999-suspended animation. The freezing barrier 
  had been overcome the previous year. Animals have been frozen and revived with
  no appreciable damage. You can noW be held in the frozen state until science 
  can guarantee reliable cures for your diseases and also restore you to 
  youthful vigor. Again you decide to take your chances with the future. You bid
  au revoir to family and friends. One last look at the 20th century, and you 
  prepare for your journey through time into the world of tomorrow.

  You are fed intravenously for two days with an enriching fluid that causes a 
  euphoric mental attitude. The digestive tract and bladder are drained of all 

  organic material. The skin is carefully cleaned with special chemicals. Again 
  the xenon-oxygen provided perfect anesthesia. The surgeons open your chest and
  remove the artificial heart. Your circulatory system is now connected to a new
  machine that first perfuses an oxygenated cell-free plasma through your body
  at 45 psi. The temperature is reduced and the surgical team makes a final 
  check before leaving the super-hyperbaric chamber. The rest of the procedure 
  be automatically controlled by the super-computer.

  The massive chamber door, which opens on the inside, is closed. It 
  incorporates a unique sealing mechanism in which a metal that melts near room 

  fills the thin crack between the door and the chamber. The temperature around 
  the door is reduced, creating a solid metal bond.

  The body temperature is lowered to O C and a heavy water (D2O) perfusate now 
  circulates through the body. Soon most of, the H2O molecules within the cells
  have been replaced with D2O. A 5-percent-by-volume addition of fluorinated 
  DMSO is now added to the perfusate. This chemical will partially protect the 

  during freezing, but its main function is to act as a biological carrier, 
  insuring that the powerful metabolic inhibitors will reach adequate levels 

  all the cells. Salt-free albumin and A TP are added to the perfusate, allowing
  the level of dissolved salts within the cells to be reduced. The pressure is
  greatly increased, and large quantities of dissolved xenon gas begin to be 
  circulated through the body. The fluid-filled cavities around the brain, 
  cord and in the eyes are properly protected by separate perfusion systems.

  The heavy-water-based perfusate fluid is replaced with a liquid fluorocarbon 
  which can hold large quantities of dissolved xenon. The pressure is slowly 

  raised as the temperature is reduced. At 5,000 psi, an optimum quantity of 
  xenon can be perfused through the body, thoroughly penetrating every cell. No 

  xenon is needed. The pressure is slowly increased to 30,062 psi. The perfusate
  pump is shut off. The body temperature is -24 C. The pressure is then lowered
  to 5,000 psi and rapid solidification begins to take place through the body. 
  Cooling continues as the pressure is again increased to 30,062 psi, allowing 

  heat of fusion energy to be dissipated. The up-and-down pressure cycle is 
  repeated four more times during continuous cooling, permitting the body to be
  uniformly frozen. Xenon hydrate protects every cell against freezing damage. 
  The body temperature continues to be lowered at a controlled rate until it is
  only 4.2 degrees above absolute zero-the temperature of liquid helium. You are
  now in a state of complete suspended animation.

  The years pass. A united humanity colonizes the solar system. All disease and 
  aging are cured-relegated to history. Man enters radiotelescope contact with 

  three super-intelligent civilizations on planets circling distant stars. Our 
  new-found extraterrestrial mends are carefully sending us all the recorded 

  wisdom and technological capabilities of millions of years of advanced 
  scientific research. Such knowledge is rapidly allowing Earth to be converted 
  into a 

  true paradise. The first starship is taking man on his initial voyage to Alpha

  2069 A. D.-the time has arrived for your reanimation. Already cells removed 
  from different parts of your body in 1999 have been stimulated into growing 
  complete replacement organs. The old diseases are fully curable.

  Your frozen body is again placed in a pressure chamber. Its temperature is 
  slowly raised to -80 C and the pressure increased to 30,062 psi. Precisely 

  controlled microwaves and ultrasonic waves quickly raise the temperature to 
  -24 C, where all the tissues are again in the liquid state. Thermal runaway 

  damage is prevented. The temperature is slowly raised and the pressure 
  carefully lowered. Perfusion fluids circulate through the body, removing the 
  xenon and 

  fluorinated DMSO. Chemicals are introduced to counteract the metabolic 
  inhibitors. H2O replaces all of the D2O. The salt content of the cells is 

  adjusted. When the temperature is raised to 25 C, natural blood replaces the 
  perfusate fluid and the pressure is reduced to 15 psi.

  The body temperature nears 37 C and the EEG brain wave monitoring shows that 
  there has been no neural damage during the long years of suspended animation.
  Slowly, the first thought begins to form deep in the subconscious. You are now
  awakening to see old and new family members. One of them is introduced as 

  physician, who supervised your reanimation. He is the grandson of your 

  You have awakened to begin again the life that ended the night before-a night 
  which spanned seven decades of momentous change on Earth.

  We now return from our flight of fantasy. The preceding description is science
  fiction, just as any description of a rocketpowered voyage to the moon in 

  was science fiction at that time. The basic engineering principles behind our 
  Apollo lunar program were known thirty years ago. In the late 1930s, Arthur C.
  Clarke and other space pioneers prepared blueprints and illustrations of the 
  type of launch systems needed to reach our nearest celestial neighbor. These 

  detailed drawings were met with extreme skepticism. A reliable liquid fueled 
  rocket had not been demonstrated in 1939, let alone a multi-staged rocket 

  system. Solid state electronics did not exist in 1939. The transistor was not 
  invented until 1948. The next 20 to 30 years will require biological 

  discoveries of comparable importance to the transistor to make this chapter 
  become reality.

  I have tried to show how one person might benefit, first from human 
  hibernation, then chemical anabiosis and finally suspended animation, in a 
  pattern which 

  assumes that they will be perfected one-by-one over a fifteen-year period. The
  predicted date of availability of a scientific breakthrough can be only an 

  educated guess. These achievements in reduced metabolism might be realized 
  Sooner or much later than the dates I have selected. On the other hand, 

  animation may never be achieved. A review, however, of past attempts to 
  seriously forecast the future achievements of science shows that the optimists

  almost always correct. Therefore, something very much like this flight of 
  fantasy could be the reality of your travel through time as a frozen 

  - Suspended Animation: The Research Possibility That May Allow Man to Conquer 
  The Limiting Chains of Time. By Robert W. Prehoda. Philadelphia: Chilton Book 
  Company, 1969. P. 122 FF.

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