Loved this piece of sciency news today: common fruit flies, apparently, can survive being frozen at -5° Celsius for more than an hour, continuing development regularly afterwards and even producing healthy offspring.
One simple trick made this possible: the fruit fly larvae were fed a mixture of an amino acid called L-proline and glycerol. Both components act as cryoprotectants. Researches got the idea after they found out that an arctic variety of drosophila produce this amino acid to withstand the cold. The arctic flies are in fact so good at it that they can survice being dipped into liquid nitrogen (!), that’s about -196°Celsius.
How absolutely cool is that? Thinking this further, Does this mean that soon all those deep-freeze fantasies, allowing humans to preserve their bodies to be awoken several years, sometimes hundreds if years later, will soon become reality?!
There’s one possible application of the cryoprotectant amino acid L-proline which could become useful in the not-so-distant future: to preserve organs just a little longer before transplantation.