Zombie Dogs & Tomorrow's Technology!

It’s hard to resist a good zombie story, and after some recent debate on an Alas thread regarding the ethics of cloning, I thought perhaps a few of you might have fun discussing this intriguing new development.

It seems that in Pittsburgh’s Safar Centre for Resuscitation Research, technology has been created to bring scientifically dead dogs back to life after a three hour period of suspension. The technique involves draining the blood from the dogs veins, replacing it with an icy saline solution, and then three hours later replacing the blood they took and bringing them back to life with electro-shock to regain a heartbeat. According to them, the brain survives in normal condition, and without damage, though there is some damage to blood vessels and other tissues that can be corrected with surgery.

In a related article by the Washington Post, it seems that there might be zombie mice out there as well:

Scientists have induced a state close to suspended animation in a mammal for the first time, a long-sought achievement that could lead to a host of medical advances for people.

By exposing mice to hydrogen sulfide gas, the researchers managed to place the animals into a condition equivalent to hibernation, which could be quickly reversed without apparently harming the creatures simply by letting them breathe fresh air.

One US battlefield doctor was quoted as saying:

“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,”

While I personally was left recalling the movie Flatliners and thinking about what this would mean for medical technology and the ability of extending life expectancy, my husband Matt feels only one real question remains:

“Upon waking do they crave human flesh and brains?”

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17 Responses to Zombie Dogs & Tomorrow's Technology!

  1. 1
    Josh Jasper says:

    Yay, advances in cryotechnology!

    Of course, none of this means anything in terms of long term freezing, so I’m holding off on getting Alcor membership. But once a human can be reliably frozen and unfrozen, sign me up.

  2. 2
    mythago says:

    “Upon waking do they crave human flesh and brains?”?

    No, just brains.

  3. 3
    Mike says:

    hopefully we can use to to help only liberals not republicans…LOL

  4. 4
    other elena says:

    Good article on this in last month’s Scientific American magazine.

  5. 5
    Kim (basement variety!) says:

    Yeah Mike, hopefully! Hur hur hur. Troll much?

  6. 6
    Josh Jasper says:

    I look forward to advances in troll banning technology in the new site.

  7. 7
    michelle b. says:

    God, that’s a cruel thing to do to dogs.

  8. 8
    Josh Jasper says:

    Interesting moral quandry, eh? Be cruel to dogs now, probably save human lives later.

  9. 9
    The Countess says:

    Brains!! Brains!!!

    What exactly did the scientists bring back to life? Did the dog’s eyes glow red and attack the assistants? This sure makes you wonder about the existence of the soul and what happens to it after death.

    All I can think of is King’s “Pet Sematary” and Poe’s “The Case of M. Valdemar”.

  10. 10
    Nancy Lebovitz says:

    Aside from jokes, I suspect that they can’t do a very complete job of checking on whether mental functions are undamaged.

  11. 11
    jam says:

    Nancy L. wrote: Aside from jokes, I suspect that they can’t do a very complete job of checking on whether mental functions are undamaged.

    how will telling the dogs jokes serve to check on their mental functions?

    oh… wait.

    never mind.

  12. 12
    maggie says:

    Forget Flatliners, this is straight out of ReAnimator! Get ready for a slew of sexual harassment claims against severed zombie heads.

  13. “This sure makes you wonder about the existence of the soul and what happens to it after death.” – Countess

    Your Ladyship, what makes you wonder about the existance of the soul?
    Seems to me this is pretty solid evidence that our bodies are little more than chemicals in various states. Unless we’re supposing dog-souls went to dog heaven for 3 minutes, then made the long trip back. Or perhaps the soul-journey to dog heaven is 90 seconds?

  14. 14
    Jake Squid says:

    Dogs don’t have souls. Everybody knows that. People are different and special. (Yes, Virginia, that was sarcasm)

    Actually, more than Reanimator, I was thinking about Return of the Living Dead and the split dog.

  15. 15
    Q Grrl says:

    “Interesting moral quandry, eh? Be cruel to dogs now, probably save
    human lives later. ”

    I see no quandry. Our fear of dying seems to justify the mutilation and torture of animals. But meanwhile we sit comfortably in our armchairs and tally up dead Iraqis.

  16. 16
    Josh Jasper says:

    I think the Tibetans have a time frame for how long a soul waits in the Bardo Realms.

  17. 17
    WALLWAGER says:

    you are all sad this is not about a souls its about science
    if we were looking at souls…it would be pointless
    no one can prove or disprove them … and if your doing this scientificly then your screwed because science is in the box
    souls are out of the box
    and a as for is it right… thats not for any one to say.
    personly i think that any advance in cryotechnology is amazing
    but i dont think any one has the right to say thats good or bad
    we as humans know nothing
    the ONLY way forward is discovery…
    AND ALL YOU PPL WHO DONT LIKE ANIMAL TESTING
    ARE STUPID….