New techniques in resuscitation have brought man’s best friend back from the beyond.
Now that the zombie apocalypse is finally upon us, we can’t forget to include our canine friends in the fun. If you’re turned off by the macabre, stop here and get back under the covers, because this is creepy. Scientists at the University of Pittsburgh’s Safar Center for Resuscitation Research have managed to revive dogs that have been dead for a full three hours. The experimenters stopped the animals’ hearts, resulting in clinical death and a total lack of brain activity. The dogs’ blood was drained and replaced with a chilled saline solution, cooling their core body temperature by about 70 degrees Fahrenheit. This cooling effect slowed down cell damage and kept the subjects in a type of suspended animation until warm blood was restored and their hearts were restarted. In all, 24 dogs were tested, and two thirds of them were revived with no apparent brain damage. (We can’t find information on what happened to the other one third.)
The purpose of this research isn’t to investigate death, but to find ways of saving wounded soldiers on the battlefield, as well as injured civilians who might not be close to advanced medical care. Safar Center director Dr. Patrick M. Kochanek explains, “The idea is to preserve the victim for just a little while in this state called suspended animation until doctors can make the necessary repairs.” Human trials (though less aggressive than those done on the dogs) are already underway.
So when you feel the terrible pain of zombie teeth ripping into your flesh, just remember that whatever happens to your undead corpse, you’ll be able to bring Fido along for the ride.