Technology Timeline

 Time line


  •  1683- The first documented study of cryobiology was documented by Sir Robert Boyle which state the effects of freezing temperatures on  living things especially animals in his monograph called the "New Experiments and Observations Touching Cold".

  • 1851- Dr. J Arnott’s usage of frozen water to treat headache, acne, and rheumatism became successful. Also, the direct application on lesion of cervical cancer provided immediate relief from pain.


  • 1940- L.W. Smith used low temperature (not up to the freezing point) to produce tumor regression.


  •  1941- Chris Polge of the University of Cambridge discovered accidentally the cryoprotective abilities of glycerol because of the mislabeling of reagent bottles. Today glycerol is commonly used in laboratories as a component for enzymatic reagents stored at freezing temperatures, because it reduces the freezing temperature of solutions and allows them to continue being biologically active.

  • 1953- Kurtin removed scars and blemishes successfully by using frozen ethyl chloride. About 273 patients were treated from scars from acne, smallpox, chickenpox, burns, tattoos, and wrinkles.

  • 1961- Cooper and Lee created a device/machine that froze a controlled region of tissue in order to treat tumors. It uses a thin insulated tube with a flow of liquid nitrogen (-196 degrees C). 

  • 1962- Wangesteen was able to treat duodenal ulcers by freezing the stomach. He inserted a rubber balloon into the patients' stomach and circulated cold alcohol (-17 to -20 degrees C) through it. About 555 patients were treated but some patients died because of the rupture in stomach or hemorrhage.

  • 1972- An embryo of a mouse was successfully frozen; live young were produced from the frozen embryos.
  • 1990- B. Rubinsky of the University of California Berkeley conducted a study involving cryosurgical procedures done on the liver as well as analysis of the damage done, and found that the formation of ice in the hepatic sinusoids expands the sinusoids, dehydrates the hepatocytes, and then leads to possible structural damage. The study shows that not all cryosurgical procedures are effective.

  •  1997- Vellet AD used cryosurgical techniques for treating prostate cancer and found out Hypothermic injury of the rectal wall and bladder base; however no residual prostatic tissue or tumor was found on follow-up biopsy. This shows the negative and positive effects of the technique.

    pictures of prostate cancer 3

  • 1998 Cryopresrevation of a Rainbow Trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) Blastomeres is likely to become a valid alternative to embryonic cryopreservation.

  • 2004 Professor Donnez of Louvain reorted the first successful ovarian birth from frozen ovarian tissue.

  • 2006 The German Society for Applied Biostasis (DGAB) is established.

  • 2007 The research for whole body vitrification system is in the final stretches.  This new system will be the most advance human cryopreservation system in the world, with complete integration and control of the relevant cryopreservation parameters, cooling, operator feedback, safety systems, and graceful failure modes.

  • 2008 Alcor's preparation of the new whole-body vitrification system is nearing the alpha testing phase.

  • 2011 MIT researchers and ETH Zurich of Switzerland have found a way to program cells to determine whether they have become cancerous, and if they have, to order their own death.

  • 2012 Fred Chamberlain III who, with his wife Linda, incorporated Alcor in 1972, was cryopreserved by Alcor on March 22, 2012.

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