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Blood Brain Barrier Preliminary Patent Application Disclousre

PPA by Yuri Pichugin, PhD, Staff Cryobiologist, Cryonics Institute
Disclosed by the Cryonics Institute and the Immortalist Society

There has been concern in the cryonics community that vitrification solutions being used in cryonics do not normally cross the Blood-Brain Barrier. Most of the vitrification effect has been due to dehydration. Considerable brain shrinkage is seen when the brain is being vitrified under optimal conditions. Cryonics researchers have wondered if better vitrification could be achieved if the brain were being better saturated with vitrification solution.

Dr. Yuri Pichugin's 2007 research at the Cryonics Institute had been directed toward the use of detergent substances to "safely" open the Blood-Brain Barrier for full saturation of the brain with vitrification solution. In September 2007 Dr. Yuri Pichugin summarized the research he had been doing in 2007 in a Preliminary Patent Application (PPA) submitted to the United States Patent Office. Dr. Pichugin had developed his protocol with rats and CI-VM-1.

21st Century Medicine independently assessed Dr. Pichugin's protocol using rabbits and their M22 vitrification solution. 21CM was able to validate that Dr. Pichugin's protocol was opening the Blood-Brain Barrier and allowing increased saturation of brain tissue with vitrification solution. But they saw no better brain tissue viability than was achieved without opening the Blood-Brain Barrier.

With the one-year deadline on the PPA approaching, both the Cryonics Institute Board of Directors and the Immortalist Society Board of Directors decided that it is better to disclose the PPA rather than to attempt to pursue a patent. If Dr. Pichugin's Blood-Brain Barrier opening protocol proves to be useful in the future the Cryonics Institute, researchers and other organizations will have free and equal access to it.

The PPA document is available here.

(Note: Dr. Pichugin resigned from his position at the Cryonics Institute in December 2007 to pursue an independent research program in Russian.)