Postponing Menopause

Springboarding off the research done to preserve female's fertility before cancer treatments, researchers are now applying the same techniques to women in an attempt to postpone menopause. Researchers remove an ovarian tissue sample, use cryopreservation to preserve the pre-menopausal tissue, and then, even decades later, thaw and graft the tissue back onto the body. This tissue can then restore the reduced hormones and delay menopause. Tissue samples from nine women are being preserved, ready to be used just as the women begin to enter menopause.

Of course the younger and healthier the original tissue sample, the more effective it will be in delaying menopause. A tissue sample from a 40-year-old woman is expected to delay menopause by only 5 years, but future women in their 20s may be able to postpone menopause or even extend their fertility window by 20 to 30 years. READ MORE...

The First Lunar Colonist!

You shouldn't expect any Lunar base construction yet; the first know lunar "colonists" are Tardigrades. These microscopic "water bears" can survive in nearly all of Earth's extreme environmental conditions - boiling, freezing, high pressure, and vacuum - everything except ultraviolet radiation. 

An experiment about the Tardigrades' adaptability to space literally crash-landed during the Israeli moon mission, Beresheet, on April 11th, scattering the thousands of tiny creatures across the moon's surface. However, without the presence of liquid water their survival rate is next to zero. READ MORE...

Are We Ready for Space Babies?

We don't have to worry about our planetary passports quite yet. As a species, we're still "light years" away from space babies, but the  European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology in Vienna presented research that frozen sperm samples can still be viable after being subject to microgravity conditions.

Montserrat Boada, director of an embryology laboratory at Dexeus Mujer, a women's health center in Barcelona, Spain and a team of researchers tested the effects of altered on sperm samples using aerial abcroatics. Passenger air flight is no comparison to the conditions these 10 sperm samples underwent which included at least 20 parabolic maneuvers that exposed the samples to space-like gravity and gravity forces two to three times more than experienced on Earth.  Other obstacles to future space colonization would include conception, the effect of microgravity on respiratory and circular systems, and the unknown prenatal effect of zero-Gs. Read more HERE

Assemble Plus Marine Funding Call

Assemble Plus


Assemble Plus has opened its fourth call for access to infrastructure in Marine labs in Europe. 

The Assemble plus consortium has opened again the Transnational access competitive calls where any scientist can apply with a good, short idea and the A+ covers the expenses (travel, accommodation, research, equipment fees) of that project for 1 month in any of the marine stations in the consortium. Application is quite straightforward and very in touch with the team on the selected destination.

Visit the Assemble Plus website for more information about how to apply. 

ISBER Best Practices Addendum

The Society for Cryobiology, in partnership with the ISBER, is pleased to announce the launch of the Liquid Nitrogen-Based Cryogenic Storage of Specimens Best Practices Addendum to the ISBER Best Practices 4th Edition. "The new Liquid Nitrogen Best Practices Addendum will be a go-to resource for the growing number of repositories being asked to store cellular products being used in adoptive therapy research and manufacturing. We are grateful to the team of contributors who are world leaders, who have shared their expertise in building and managing facilities to support collections requiring sub-Tg (glass transition, -135°C) storage,” said David Lewandowski, President of ISBER.
The new ISBER Addendum and the ISBER Best Practices 4th Edition is available to download now.

2019 Royan Institute Cryobiology & Biobanking Symposium

The Royan Institute held their third cryobiology and biobanking symposium on February 27, 2019, in Tehran, Iran. The Royan Institute was established in 1991 as a public non-profit research institute for reproductive biomedicine and infertility treatments. Today Royan consists of three research institutes: 

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Pig Brains Partially Revived after Death

Yale scientists managed to partially revive the brains of decapitated pigs by flooding the organ with oxygen-rich artificial blood. These researchers are quick to assure the public the brains did not show any signs of consciousness; instead, their experiment showed the possibility of limiting or reversing long term brain damage as blood stops circulating. The ability to restore cell function to the brain and slow the decay process in pig brains deceased 4 to 6 hours has the potential for extraordinary applications for stroke or Alzheimer victims. The entire article can be read HERE.

Permafrost Preserved Foal

Russian and South Korean researchers have extracted liquid blood and urine samples from a 42,000-year-old foal preserved by the Siberian permafrost. Upon discovery in August 2018, the one to two-week-old foal showed no external damage with skin, tail, and hooves still intact with hair still present on portions of the body. The scientist's lofty goal is to clone the horse and revive the extinct Lenskaya horse breed to which this foal belongs. A viable DNA sample from the blood is required for any hope of cloning and the scientists currently have 20 unviable blood samples. However, they are confident and are actively searching for a suitable surrogate mare in anticipation of a successful clone. The full article can be found HERE.

New Administrator Announced

The Society for Cryobiology is pleased to announce that we have employed a new administrator - Amelia Hanson. She has an education in chemical engineering and experience in the Houston oil & gas industry. A native Texan, Amelia now lives in New Zealand as a technical writer and website designer. Working directly with the society's Executive Director, Nicole Evans, Amelia assumed the position of administrator February 27th, 2019. You can contact her at [email protected].

2019 Election

Do you have what it takes to govern the Society for Cryobiology?  


Nominations are now open for the following posts:

  • President-Elect (2020-2021)
  • Secretary (2020-2021)
  • Treasurer (2020-2021)
  • 3 Governors (2020-2022)

The Board of Governors is now inviting nominations from all Society members in good standing for the officer and governor posts detailed above.

At least two candidates are required for each officer position and six candidates are required for the governor positions. To express interest, please email [email protected] by May 31, 2019. The elections are held online in the last quarter of 2019.  You can read more information about the roles and responsibilities, as well as the election procedure outlines in the SfC bylaws

Please note all nominations are subject to final approval by the nominations committee. This does not affect your right to a nomination by petition as outlined in the SfC bylaws, Section 7.03

Program Committee Track Co-Chair for Plant Cryobiotechnology at CRYO2019

Gayle VolkGayle Volk, a CRYO2019 Program Committee Track Co-Chair for Plant Cryobiotechnology, has recently been in the news about a study into heritage apple cultivars in Wyoming, USA. Samples from Heritage apples, planted in the 1800s, were collected from nearly a hundred farms, orchards, or homesteads and are being studied to determine existing traits that allow these trees to survive, even thrive, in the harsh, cold Wyoming climate. 

The original article can be found HERE

Potential Male Cancer Fertility Breakthrough

Photo by Magda Ehlers from PexelsTesticle tissue samples from the rhesus macaques are being used in new research to preserve the fertility of preadolescent boys with cancer. Kyle Orwig from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and his team, removed testicle tissue from 5 prepubescent monkeys. After the monkeys reached sexual maturity, the tissue was grafted back onto the monkey's back and scrotum and within 12 months all 5 monkeys were producing testosterone and sperm. The team used the sperm from one of the monkeys to successfully impregnate a female.

Prior to puberty, young boys don't develop sperm that can be preserved in the event of infertility, a common side effect of chemotherapy and radiation. By taking small testicle samples of these young boys, researchers hope to be able to preserve the fertility of these future cancer survivors. The original article can be found HERE

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Call for Fellow Nominations

Fellow Nominations Open 

CALL FOR CRYOFELLOW NOMINATIONS - DEADLINE APRIL 30

Gao
President, Jason Acker, presents President-Elect, Dayong Gao with the CryoFellow Medal at CRYO2017. 

The 2018 CryoFellows Nominations Committee is now soliciting nominations for the appointment of new CryoFellows. This Committee, consisting of three members of the Board of Governors and two CryoFellows, evaluates the nominations and makes recommendations to the Board for approval of new Fellows.

Jan 30: Nominations Open 
April 30: Nominations Close
May - mid-July: Evaluation of nomination materials by Fellow Committee
July 21: Board of Governors to vote on Fellow Committee recommendations
July 22: Announcement of New Fellows at CRYO2019 in San Diego

The Society for Cryobiology established an award and medal of CryoFellow just over a decade ago in recognition of members of the society and individuals from the cryobiology community at large who have had an outstanding impact on the field.

CryoFellows are awarded this prestigious status in recognition of: scientific impact of their research on cryobiology (50%); sustained nature of that impact (20%); generation of scientific offspring (20%); and service to the Society (10%).

There is no formal application form on which to make the nomination, but the documents you provide the committee should be of sufficient depth to support the candidate's contributions to the categories mentioned above in a clear and demonstrable way. Usually this will mean inclusion with the nomination:

(1) Supporting letters from members of the Society or other major contributors to cryobiology (including one from the nominator); and 

(2) a detailed resume for the nominee. I suggest you contact the proposed CryoFellow to discuss their nomination before proceeding and to obtain the resume from the nominee.

Please note the nominated individual must be living at the time that he or she is nominated.

If there is someone you would like to nominate, or you would like to have an informal discussion before proceeding with nomination, please email me at [email protected]

New UCL and Royal Free Ovarian Tissue Bank

New UCL and Royal Free Ovarian Tissue Bank

University College London (UCL) and the Royal Free London Hospital have announced a new ovarian tissue bank to preserve the fertility of girls and women about to undergo treatment for cancer. 

The publically funded initiative will be led by UCL academic Dr. Paul Hardiman (UCL Institute of Women's Health) and consultant in obstetrics and gynaecology at the Royal Free Hospital in London, with consultation by Society for Cryobiology Fellow, Prof. Barry Fuller, head of research for the UCL Division of Surgery, and  Prof. Mark Lowdell, UCL director of Cellular Therapeutics.

Worldwide there have been approximately 100 live births following ovarian tissue preservation and subsequent reimplantation on the remaining ovary or into the lining of the abdominal cavity. 

Dr. Hardiman, tissue bank director, said: 
“We have modelled our protocols on how it is done at the Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, one of the largest hospitals in Denmark, where they have been freezing human ovarian tissue since 1999. This is a well-established method in Europe, the US and Japan but the UK has lagged behind and patients often faced having to go abroad and pay to receive this treatment. At a time when patients need to concentrate on life-saving therapies this intervention needs to take place as quickly as possible.”

“What makes the Royal Free London so ideally suited to provide this service is that we have a unique mix of facilities and expertise in tissue freezing and cell therapy including Professor Barry Fuller, head of research for the UCL Division of Surgery and Interventional Science and Professor Mark Lowdell, director of Cellular Therapeutics.  We are also a leading kidney and liver transplant centre and the principle UK centre for cell and tissue medicines which has helped facilitate approval from the Human Tissue Authority. We are very grateful for the support from the Royal Free Charity over the past seven years which funded Natalie Getreu*, a PhD student, who played an important role in enabling us to bring this to patients.”

*Society for Cryobiology student member, Natalie Getreu, presented her PhD research for the Ovarian Tissue Bank at CRYO2017 and CRYO2016. 









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John Armitage Awarded OBE

W. John Armitage named Officer of the British Empire (OBE) 

John-ArmitageProf. W. John Armitage has recently been awarded an OBE for services to corneal transplantation in the Queen's New Year Honours list. 

John is the Head of Research and Development for Ocular Tissue, NHS Blood and Transplant, Emeritus Professor, Bristol Medical School, University of Bristol, and former Director of Bristol Tissue Bank, which comprised the Bristol Eye Bank and Bristol Heart Valve Bank. 

John completed his PhD in cardiac cryopreservation and research posts in Cambridge, UK and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, USA, before joining the Department of Opthamology in Bristol, UK, where he set up the Bristol Eye Bank to carry out research into corneal preservation.

The Bristol Eye Bank, one of the largest eye banks in Europe, is home to the UK's Corneal Transplant Service (CTS), which provides corneas to hospitals across the UK. Since 1986 the CTS has provided corneal transplants for over 70,000 patients through the UK's National Health Service (NHS). Although funded by the NHS, management of the eye bank remained at Bristol until 2015, at which time it was transferred to the National Health Service Blood and Transplant (NHSBT), the public body overseeing all blood, organ, and tissue transplants in the UK. 

One of the major breakthroughs of the CTS was the introduction of 34°C (93°F) organ culture storage, which extended the life of transplants from a few days, to approximately four weeks. This transformed the face of corneal transplantation in the UK by improving logistics and supply, allowing transplants to be scheduled weeks in advance, as opposed to emergency surgery.  

Speaking of his award, John said,  "I am delighted to have my work recognised in this way, which also reflects the significant impact of the work of the Bristol Eye Bank and acknowledges the collective effort of NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) and Bristol University staff, ophthalmology colleagues in Bristol Eye Hospital and hospitals throughout the UK, and the support of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists. However, above all, it is the thoughtfulness and generosity of the families of eye donors, without whom corneal transplantation would not be possible, that truly merit the thanks of patients and their doctors."

John is the current President of the European Eye Bank Association, of which he was a founding member, Associate Editor of Cryobiology, and a long time member and former Governor of the Society for Cryobiology. 

CRYO2020 Location Announced

CRYO2020 Location Announced 

The Board of Governors is pleased to announce that the location for CRYO2020 is America's Windy City, Chicago. 

Location
Crowne Plaza Chicago O'Hare Hotel and Conference Center 
440 N River Rd, Rosemont, IL 60018, USA

Dates
Board of Governors Meeting/Evening Welcome Reception: Monday July 20, 2020
Annual Meeting: Tuesday July 21 - Friday July 24, 2020

Further details will follow in the second half of 2019. 

New Fellows Announced

New Fellows Announced

The Board of Governors is pleased to announce the recent approval of two new Fellows of the Society for Cryobiology: Jason Acker and Janet Elliott. Janet and Jason will be presented with their Fellow medals during a special session at CRYO2019, held in San Diego, July 22-25, 2019. 

Jason Acker 
Jason AckerDr. Jason Acker is a Senior Research Scientist with the Canadian Blood Services and a Professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada. He received his Bachelor of Science, Master of Science in Experimental Pathology and PhD in Medical Sciences degrees from the University of Alberta.  In 2000, Dr. Acker completed a Canadian Institutes of Health Research Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Dr. Acker received a Master of Business Administration in Technology Commercialization program from the Alberta School of Business at the University of Alberta in 2009. 

Focusing his research on understanding the biological response of cells to freezing and freeze-drying has allowed Dr. Acker to develop a solid foundation from which he has contributed to the design of new methods for the long-term storage of a number of cell types and tissues. 

Dr. Acker’s research program over the past 15 years has continued to focus on expanding our understanding of the biological response of cells and tissues to freezing and freeze-drying.  His work has specifically focused on the development of intracellular protectants as a novel class of molecules that can protect cells and tissues during freezing and drying. In addition to the seminal contributions to our understanding of cryoinjury that Dr. Acker has made, it has been the translation work that he is often most recognized for. In the area of transfusion medicine, Dr. Acker is a world leader in understanding the effects of blood component manufacturing and low-temperature storage on patient outcomes and has led many national and international efforts to improve the quality and safety of blood components. Dr. Acker’s blood services laboratory has responsibility for developing scientific and technical evidence to support innovative changes in blood product manufacturing, storage and utilization at CBS.  Dr. Acker leads efforts to assess new technology, products and processes that can improve the efficiency, quality and safety of blood product manufacturing.  Through his study of low temperatures, Dr. Acker has made, and will continue to make, significant contributions the practical aspects of cell and tissue banking.

Janet Elliott
Janet Elliott
Biography courtesy of University of Alberta
Dr. Elliott obtained her B.A.Sc. in Engineering Science (Engineering Physics Option) and her M.A.Sc. and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Toronto. She has been a Visiting Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and at the Oxford Centre for Collaborative Applied Mathematics.

Dr. Elliott currently serves as Associate Editor of the journal Cryobiology, on the Editorial Advisory Board of The Journal of Physical Chemistry, and on the American Chemical Society Division of Colloid & Surface Chemistry Executive Committee. She has served on scientific committees for international conferences in the areas of cryobiology, surfaces and colloids, and space physical sciences. She has served on grant selection committees for all three of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA). She has served as a member of the Physical Sciences Advisory Committee for the Canadian Space Agency and on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering.

Dr. Elliott’s research has been recognized nationally in science and engineering by the Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering Syncrude Canada Innovation Award (2008), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Doctoral Prize (1998), the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers Young Engineer Achievement Award (2001), the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research Young Explorer’s Prize (2002) and Time Magazine’s Canadians Who Define the New Frontiers of Science (2002). Dr. Elliott has also received provincial and University awards including the University of Alberta Teaching Unit Award (2004, 2016). As one student put it, “She could convince rocks to study thermodynamics.” 














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New Website Launch

New Website Launch 

The Society for Cryobiology is pleased to announce the launch of their brand new website. 

New Features

  • Completely Updated Template - Mobile responsive template with a fresh, modern feel.
  • Integrated Payment Gateway - Say goodbye to Paypal. You'll now stay on the Society's site while you check out using your credit or debit card. 
  • Automated Dues Invoicing - Dues renewal notices will be triggered automatically with each member receiving a customized invoice to pay online. Simply click the button in your email, and pay online with your credit card. 
  • Updated Membership Form - Apply or renew using the same form, with advanced field logic permissioning fields to appropriate applicants/users only. 
  • New Job Board - The Society has partnered with JobBoard.io who offer special pricing to Associations. Post your job on the Society's Job Board only, or push it out to the entire Zip Recruiter network. The choices is yours. 
  • Brand New Member Directory - Logged in members can search for members, or view the entire directory (members must opt in to the directory to be viewable).
  • Updated and Revised Members' Area - Stay tuned as we add more members' only content over the coming year. 
  • New 'Industry' Menu Item - A call to action for industry professionals to get involved with the Society by supporting our Annual Meeting
  • New 'Resources' Menu Item - New pages include 'Position Statements', 'Scientific Partners', and a soon to be added Press Release page. 
  • Sponsor Widget - We can now recognize the sponsors of our Annual Meeting using a sponsor advertisement which will appear in the sidebar, or at the bottom of your screen. 
  • Donation Widget - A high visibility call to action asking site visitors to donate to the Society. 
  • Upgraded Events Calendar - Now dynamically displays event name, date and location in an automatically generated events calendar. 

Membership Dues Increase

Membership Dues Increase

At the Board of Governor's end of year quarterly meeting they voted to increase individual membership dues from $75, to $90 for the 2019 membership year. This is the first increase in membership dues since 2015. The price of the journal subscription remains unchanged at $185 for 6 issues over 12 months. 

The additional funds will go towards supporting the recently created Young Investigator Award, which will be available to enter by young professionals <10 years post-PhD. The award will carry an honorarium of $5,000, and the opportunity for the winner to present their research in a plenary session or symposium at the Society's Annual Meeting. 

The next anticipated review of membership dues will be in 2022. 

CRYO2019 Call for Abstracts

CRYO2019 Call for Abstracts 

The first call for abstracts for CRYO2019 has been released on November 26, 2018. Abstract submission will close on March 4, 2019. 

For more information and to submit your abstract please visit the CRYO2019 website