Toddler cryogenically frozen by parents after death

Two-year-old Matheryn Naovaratpong before she fell ill. Photo: Facebook

A toddler who died from a brain tumour has become the youngest person to be cryogenically frozen in the hope she will one day be revived.

Two-year-old Matheryn Naovaratpong, from Thailand, was diagnosed with a rare cancer called ependymoblastoma. Tests revealed a 11cm tumour in the left side of her brain, Motherboard's Brian Merchant reports.

The disease has a five-year survival rate of 30 per cent.

Matheryn fell into a coma and endured 12 rounds of brain surgery, 20 chemotherapy treatments, and 20 radiation therapy sessions. Her parents switched off her life support machine and she died on January 8 this year.

Her family had her body cryogenically preserved by Arizona-based Alcor. Her brain and body were frozen separately at -196C, the Daily Mail reported.

Her family hopes that one-day scientific advances will be able to revive her. If that’s not possible, they hope the cells from her brain and body can be studied in the future to help find a cure for the disease that killed her.

The cost of having loved ones preserved is between $80,000 and $200,000, plus a $770 annual fee.

The procedure involves putting the patient on to an ‘ice bed’, restarting the heart artificially, draining the blood and replacing it with antifreeze, and slowly lowering the body’s temperature over two weeks to -196C.

Matheryn’s father, who is unnamed in reports, told media the freezing gave his daughter the opportunity to one day breathe again.

Matheryn’s mother Nareerat said the procedure was important to the family.

“At least, we devoted her life and body for the progress and development of science,” she said.