Inside the lab where frozen bodies wait for a second lease on life – 9News

Posted: September 29, 2019 at 6:44 am

The idea of paying a company hundreds of thousands of dollars to freeze your body or brain in the hope that they will one day bring you back to life initially may seem farcical.

The mere fact that this notion has featured in several movies and television shows suggests this is make-believe, something that would probably not happen in real life.

Who could forget that fantastic scene from Austin Powers when doctors successfully thaw out Mike Myers so that he can live in another era?

Well, this is no movie. And no joke.

And interestingly, Alcor CEO Max More isn't bothered by cryonics being trivialised for entertainment.

"I don't think it stigmatises it, I think it actually makes it seem more plausible," More says when I asked him about this at his Arizona Headquarters.

He shares the building with about 170 frozen bodies and brains all suspended upside down in liquid nitrogen-filled vats.

As I walked through the room where all these cryopreserved people are, it feels eerie and weird, quite frankly.

But there are more than 1250 Alcor members who've signed up for the same fate from all over the world Australia, Canada, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Portugal, the UK, the US, Italy, Israel and more.

These members all have the choice of freezing their whole body for about A$300,000 or just their brain for A$118,000.

That is, needless to say, a lot of cash to hand over for a service the company can't even promise will eventuate.

"There's no guarantee but it seems like it's worth a shot," More says.

Alcor founder Linda Chamberlain explains that members sign a nine-page consent form.

"We tell people everything that could possibly go wrong and that's extremely important because what we are doing is still experimental and people need to know that," she says.

"The Alcor Life Extension Foundation is the world leader in cryonics, cryonics research, and cryonics technology," their website reads.

"Cryonics is the practice of using ultra-cold temperature to preserve a human body with the intent of restoring good health when the technology becomes available to do so."

The hope or as they prefer to call it, "probability" is that one day science will have been developed that is capable of reviving frozen patients.

They would come back to life as the same person, with the same DNA.

I was wildly sceptical about this upon arriving at their Scottsdale building in the hot desert of Arizona.

I was worried members may be vulnerable to handing over thousands of dollars on false promises.

But it was quickly evident that those running this business whole-heartedly believe the plausibility of cryonics recreating life in the future.

The reality is not many people can afford to become a member and embark on such a thing.

But, if you were a millionaire, even if you thought this was questionable, what have you got to lose? When you're dead, you're dead.

Or are you? That's the question.

Even the masterminds behind this concept don't have the answer. Hence the consent form.

Continued here:
Inside the lab where frozen bodies wait for a second lease on life - 9News

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