How Cryopreservation Has Changed Medical Research

by • June 17, 2022 • ScienceComments (0)11

Any breakthrough in medicine benefits us all, so it can be interesting to follow the progress of medical researchers and scientists. When it comes to measuring the impact of a scientific or medical advance, cryopreservation stands out due to its numerous applications.

How has cryopreservation changed medical research? Read on to find out more.

What is Cryopreservation?

Cryopreservation is the practice of storing living organisms, tissues, and cells at low temperatures to maintain their structural integrity and functions for long periods. This process is possible thanks to the cryogenic properties of liquid nitrogen. The ideal medium for cryopreservation is an ln2 freezer.

New Research Directions: Stem Cells

Cryopreservation has both theoretical and practical relevance, so it has widely expanded research areas. A major new research direction made possible by cryopreservation is stem cell therapy. Stem cells are unspecialized cells that can adopt any cell function in the body and thus replace damaged or missing cells, canceling the effects of an illness or disease.

Cryopreservation of stem cells has allowed researchers to study and modify the behavior of other cells and study diseases using in vitro models. Stem cell therapy is one of the most promising directions in medicine currently because it can help fight against many diseases that are now incurable.

New Possibilities to Work with Complex Specimens

Cryopreservation has an essential role in medical research because it allows researchers and scientists to store, use, and study complex specimens such as organs and tissues. The benefits are wide-ranging. By facilitating organ and tissue preservation, cryopreservation makes organ transplantation easier and more likely to succeed. The major problem with organ transplantation has always been storage. Cryopreservation is an effective solution for viable organs.

The medical sector expects more breakthroughs in complex specimen cryopreservation in the future, with vast implications for public health.

Drug Discovery and Development

In medical research, drug discovery and development is a priority. Thanks to cryopreservation, it is possible to develop new, life-saving drugs. Studying organs helps understand the biological mechanisms behind certain health conditions. Moreover, tissue slices can reveal crucial information about the organ from which they are derived.

The ability to preserve living biological samples for a long time gives researchers enough time to reach valuable conclusions about effective treatment paths.

New Pathways for Assisted Reproduction

Research in assisted reproductive technologies has attracted a lot of interest in the last few decades, and cryopreservation plays a fundamental role here.

Cryopreservation made artificial insemination, in vitro fertilization, and other assisted reproduction methods possible. Thus, this medical and scientific practice has helped the entire medical sector understand fertility and infertility better, with many valuable practical and theoretical applications.

Cryopreservation also allows researchers to learn more about embryos.

Final Words

Cryopreservation has brought revolutionary progress to medical research and will gradually facilitate many other discoveries. Many medical procedures that we take for granted today were impossible before cryopreservation. In the future, we can expect new results in drug development, a better understanding of various diseases, and more widely accessible assisted reproduction methods.

Photo via Unsplash

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