Sunday, July 10, 2005

Zombie dogs

Boffins create zombie dogs

By Nick Buchan of 27-06-2005 From:,10119,15739502,00.html

Eerie ... boffins have brought dead dogs back to life, in the name ofscience.

SCIENTISTS have created eerie zombie dogs, reanimating the canines afterseveral hours of clinical death in attempts to develop suspendedanimation for humans. US scientists have succeeded in reviving the dogs after three hours ofclinical death, paving the way for trials on humans within years. Pittsburgh's Safar Centre for Resuscitation Research has developed atechnique in which subject's veins are drained of blood and filled withan ice-cold salt solution. The animals are considered scientifically dead, as they stop breathing and have no heartbeat or brain activity. But three hours later, their blood is replaced and the zombie dogs are brought back to life with an electric shock. Plans to test the technique on humans should be realised within a year, according to the Safar Centre.

However rather than sending people to sleep for years, then bringing them back to life to benefit from medical advances, the boffins would be happy to keep people in this state for just a few hours, But even a this should be enough to save lives such as battlefield casualties and victims of stabbings or gunshot wounds, who have suffered huge blood loss. During the procedure blood is replaced with saline solution at a fewdegrees above zero. The dogs' body temperature drops to only 7C, compared with the usual 37C, inducing a state of hypothermia before death.

Although the animals are clinically dead, their tissues and organs are perfectly preserved.Damaged blood vessels and tissues can then be repaired via surgery. The dogs are brought back to life by returning the blood to theirbodies,giving them 100 per cent oxygen and applying electric shocks to restart their hearts. Tests show they are perfectly normal, with no brain damage." The results are stunning. I think in 10 years we will be able to prevent death in a certain segment of those using this technology," said one US battlefield doctor.

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