Human corpses frozen by cryogenics could be brought back to life in the next decade, an expert has claimed.
Around 350 people worldwide have had their corpse preserved at low temperatures immediately after death in the hope it can be revived in the future.
Dennis Kowalski, president of the Michigan-based Cryonics Institute – an organisation fronting the human freezing process – has now claimed scientists could reanimate one of these corpses within the next ten years.
Speaking to the Daily Star, Mr Kowalski, 49, said: ‘If you take something like CPR, that would have seemed unbelievable 100 years ago. Now we take that technology for granted.
‘Cryonically bringing someone back to life should definitely be doable in 100 years, but it could be as soon as ten.’
Mr Kowalksi’s Cryonics Institute has almost 2,000 people signed up to be frozen after they die.
The firm already has 160 patients frozen in specialised tanks of liquid nitrogen at its headquarters.
Mr Kowalski said that when the first patients are reanimated depends on the rate at which modern medicine improves.
‘It depends on how much technology like stem-cells advances,’ he said.
Cryonics, also known as cryogenics and cryopreservation, is the art of freezing a dead body or body parts in order to preserve them.
Advocates see it as a miracle procedure to cheat death, with the hope that they will be revived once medical science has progressed far enough to cure whatever killed them.
Currently, it is only legal to freeze someone when they have just been declared dead.
The freezing process must begin as soon as the patient dies in order to prevent brain damage, with facilities currently available in Russia, the US and Portugal.
In the procedure, the body is cooled in an ice bath to gradually reduce its temperature bit by bit.
Experts then drain the blood and replace it with an anti freeze fluid to stop harmful ice crystals forming in the body.
Mr Kowalski made headlines in December when he paid £100,000 ($140,000) to have his entire family frozen so they could be reanimated together.
The 49-year-old, his wife Maria and their three sons – Jacob, 19, Danny, 17, and James, 16 – are all down to be preserved in a vat of liquid nitrogen when they pass away.
In an interview last month, the ex-paramedic said the process could give his family a ‘second chance at life’.
Mr Kowalski, who lives in Wisconsin, suggested those who take part have ‘little to lose and virtually everything to gain’.
He said: ‘I heard about the process when I was a teenager. I thought it sounded really interesting.
‘Many years later I signed up with the Cryonics Institute. That was 20 years ago now. Now my wife and three teenage sons are also all signed up.
‘Of course my sons are young so not thinking about it too much.
‘But things happen in life and you never know.’