I have an alien species, and I want them to be able to go into a kind of hibernation mode, where they can stop almost, if not all bodily processes, like breathing, heart beating, thinking, everything. Then, after a period of months, they can be resuscitated by administering an electric shock to the creature.

Is there any way this would be biologically possible?

Because it seems necessary, I am still operating under the current laws of our universe as we understand them. This is not a fantasy story, it is a science fiction sorry.

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    $\begingroup$ How would we know? You are telling us nothing about these aliens' physiology, or how this "hibernation mode" is supposed to work. If you want it, you can posit it; if you want to be able to explain it, find an evolutionary pressure leading toward such a development. Either way, I think this question is not answerable in its current form. $\endgroup$
    – user
    Apr 28 '16 at 14:57
  • $\begingroup$ with aliens everything is possible: you make them up the way you want, you make them do whatever you prefer. They do that in plenty of movies and books. $\endgroup$ Apr 28 '16 at 15:07
  • $\begingroup$ I made an edit to hopefulky improve the question. If I have changed too much feel free to improve the edit or roll back. $\endgroup$ Apr 28 '16 at 15:20
  • $\begingroup$ @MichaelKjörling I don't care about the alien's physiology, that is subject to change for this question. And I did describe how this hibernation mode works, the creature somehow stops all of its processes and can be brought out of it with an electric charge. I just want to know if it is biologically possible, regardless of how they came to be that way. $\endgroup$ Apr 28 '16 at 15:34
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    $\begingroup$ I understand your point and do not think the question deserves downvoting or closing. I think it might be a problem of wording. But if in essence it reads like "can a creation of fantasy do fantastic stuff" then the answer is clear. In many question is asked to justify completely fantastic creations with reality and it can be a bit odd. Not sure if I should post about it in Meta, Ive been been tempted to do so several times but Im afraid the whole reason for discussing such a thing would be just misunderstood and dismissed $\endgroup$ Apr 28 '16 at 16:09

Short answer: Yes, easily, and they don't even have to be alien.

There are multiple examples in current life of animals that hibernate over extended periods. Only a few can manage the length of time you're talking about though, and those that I know of all take advantage of the fact that they can Freeze entirely and stay alive.

First up that I can find a reference for is the Alaskan Wood Frog, which has been observed hibernating for 7 months. They manage this because their cells have a sort of natural anti-freeze, which means that they can be frozen without their cell-structure being compromised.

There have been numerous examples of this skill over the course of human history - I know there was at least once bug in the Cretaceous period which lived in the Antarctic forests, that would freeze over the winter and wake up when it thawed in the sun several months later.

So, essentially. All you need to do is have this Alien race be rather like an Alaskan Wood Frog, and all they have to do is Freeze and Thaw out in order to achieve your requirement.


If its a plant or an animal no, at least not as you put it in your question. If I understood it well then you want a complete death-like state. There are various kind of dormant states but noone of them can allow a zero metabolic activity, they all need at least a minimal percentage. If you move towards a bacterium or virus then the whole thing changes as the former can in some species suspend metabolic activity and the latter doesn't have one of its own to start with (but I don't think these are the organisms you were thinking to use)


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