April 18th, 2014
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Tag Archives: Transhumanism

THE TRANSHUMANIST SCRAPBOOK: REGENERATION – AND OTHER THINGS – A STEP CLOSER… (WELL, AT LEAST IN MICE)

At one time, rodents -rats and mice – were excoriated by most of humanity for having been the carriers of deadly plagues, but perhaps now humanity may owe a tiny word of thanks to the lowly rodent; scientists have succeeded, for the first time ever, in reversing the aging process in a mammalian organ, and regenerating it:

Scientists Fully Regenerate Organ In Living Animal For The First Time

The method selected here was one of the four GRIN technologies – Genetics, Robotics, Information processing and Nanotechnologies – that are the favored tools in the transhumanist toolbox, and which my co-author Dr Scott D de Hart and I wrote about in our book Transhumanism: A Grimoire of Alchemical Agendas. At this juncture, it becomes rather easy to predict what the next steps in this ongoing technological transformation of culture might be(and a big thank you to Ms. P.H., a regular reader here, for finding this gem):

Biologists have built an artificial chromosome

These two articles, taken together, suggest the next steps in the technological tree leading to genuine rejuvenation and life-prolongation:

  1.  extension of the genetic technique used on the thymus in laboratory animals to other organs, and study of the processes of aging in each;
  2. extension of the technique to other life forms, including the human, and to veterinary medicine for possible agricultural use (if you were worried about GMOs, folks, think about that one for a moment, and the implications of constructing an artificial chromosome for patent law, and the way this has been exploited by the agribusiness companies);
  3. preliminary studies on what I have called – in other blogs on this topic – “combinatorial” uses of various technologies, stem cell methods, such as is exhibited in the first article, with nanotechnology, small machines, either organic or inorganic, to perform robotic tasks of cell repair (or, in the inevitable military applications, destruction).

The second article contains a warning however, and it is worth citing it extensively, for the careful reader will detect the dim echoes of the sort of overblown confidence we heard with the appearance of GMO crops:

“In this latest breakthrough, Jef Boeke and his team (including 60 undergrads!) at the New York University Langone Medical Center synthesized one of the 16 chromosomes of a standard brewer’s yeast cell. They did so after deleting superfluous genetic material, including repeated sections, “jumping genes,” and so-called junk DNA that doesn’t code for proteins — portions deemed not necessary for the yeast’s everyday survival.

“Importantly, unlike bacteria and viruses, yeast is a microorganism consisting of a single cell — what are called eukaryotes (they have a cell nucleus). This is important because plants and vertebrates have cells like these, including us humans. It’s an important proof-of-concept that’s most certainly applicable to our genetic constitutions. But it’ll be a while yet before this moves to the human sphere as our genome is considerably larger. We have over three billion base pairs, and they’re much harder to rebuild.

“But once this happens, we’ll be able to use this sort of biotech to do such things as increase human immune function, slow down the effects of aging or even boost our memory and intelligence. They could provide new forms of immunization, protecting against specific diseases like AIDS or certain cancers. And we could also be endowed with new capacities altogether, including the ability to see ultraviolet light, or navigation in the dark by a system of sonar similar to that employed by bats.”

We were, at one point, confidently assured that none of the genetic modifications in GMOs could ever “jump species” and show up in organisms that consumed them. After all, when we eat hamburgers, drumsticks, or fillets, we don’t turn into cows, chickens, turkeys, or fish… that is, until recently, when “by some unexplained mechanism,” it appears that in some cases this has inexplicably happened. Here, we’re being reassured that chopping out all that “junk DNA” doesn’t really matter, since yeast cells don’t really need it. This is an egregious arrogance, the sort of scientism for which science is quickly turning its back on its own principles; just because we don’t completely understand why the junk DNA is there, does not mean it’s not important, or that it may not perform some vital function we have not yet discovered. I suspect the higher up in the phylogenetic tree of life one goes, the more important this “junk” DNA may in fact become.

In any case, we need to be aware of this new impending technique, and what it’s implications are, before the corporations get ahold of it and see us another bill of goods about the harmlessness of their products and the techniques that created them. There needs to be here, as there was not with GMOs, a multitude of genuinely independent and inter-generational  tests over a prolonged period of time before such products would ever see the market. I am even bold to suggest that if the time frame for such tests does not make corporate investors squirm and squeal at the prospect that they will not see, in their lifetime, dividends on such research, that the tests are probably a sham, and inadequate.

Sorry boys, but that’s the consequence of your own lousy corporate science coming home to roost.

There’s more, of course, but that will have to wait for tomorrow.

See you on the flip side.

 

THE TRANSHUMANIST SCRAPBOOK: HUMAN SUSPENDED ANIMATION TRIALS

Here’s yet another development to put in your transhumanist scrapbook, courtesy of Mr. V.T. who shared it. This weeks scrap for the scrapbook? Suspended animation trials on humans are slated to begin at a Pittsburgh hospital: Humans will be kept between life and death in the first suspended animation trials If all this sounds a[More...]

THE TRANSHUMANIST SCRAPBOOK: THE SEARCH FOR “EXTRAORDINARY HUMANS”

This one is another significant development in the growing transhumanist story, and one for the transhumanist scrapbook(and my thanks to M.M. for finding this one, and bringing it to my attention). It seems the scramble is on to search for “extraordinary humans” and that this scramble is being led by pharmaceutical companies. Hold on to[More...]

TIDBIT FOR THE TRANSHUMANISM SCRAPBOOK: NIGHT VISION LENSES

Here’s another development for the transhumanist scrapbook: Night vision contact lenses come closer to reality

ANOTHER ONE FOR THE TRANSHUMANIST SCRAPBOOK: DRACONIAN PUNISHMENTS

So many people sent me versions of this important and significant development that it was simply a kind of moral imperative that I alert readers here to it, and say something about it. In this case, there are four different articles, each of which reveals, almost immediately, what the new concern is: Is Biotech Seeking[More...]

THE TRANSHUMANIST SCRAPBOOK: FDA SEEKS APPROVAL OF THREE-PARENTED BABIES

There is another significant story out there that is developing as we speak, folks, and once again, it concerns transhumanism, and in this case, the very essence of what it is to be human, both biologically, and as we shall see in a moment, in law. This story I found while surfing, and it must[More...]

ANOTHER ONE FOR THE TRANSHUMANIST SCRAPBOOK: BILLIONAIRE GETTING YOUNGER…& BREAKAWAY SPECULATIONS

Over the course of following the transhumanist phenomenon and movement, many people have noted to me, and I myself have observed, the uncanny longevity of some of the world’s super-wealthy and powerful people. One need only think of H.M. Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom, or of David Rockefeller, and so on. In the case[More...]

DARPA WANTS BLACK BOXES FOR THE BRAIN…

Yes, you read the title correctly: DARPA, the Diabolically Apocalyptic Research Projects Agency, wants to put the equivalent of an airliner’s black box into the brains of soldiers, and, for those following it, it has all the hallmarks of yet another one of those transhumanist memes – the merger of man and machine and the[More...]

ANOTHER ONE FOR THE GMO-TRANSHUMANIST SCRAPBOOK: DNA TRANSFERENCE FROM GMOS TO HUMANS!?

Now this one, folks, I really don’t know what to make of… it comes to us courtesy of Mr. G,B., and in a certain sense, when I read it, I didn’t want to think that Dr. Scott deHart and I were right. But first, the article itself, and then my retrospective: Confirmed: DNA From Genetically[More...]

THE TRANSHUMANIST SCRAPBOOK: THE BIONIC MAN COMING TO LIFE: FIRSTS IN PROSTHETICS ALLOW SENSATIONS

Some of us are old enough to remember the sci-fi television series called The Six Million Dollar Man, starring actor Lee Majors. Majors played astronaut Steve Austin, who was severely injured in an accident. In the opening sequence of each episode, the audience is assured that Austin can be “rebuilt” and be “even better than before,” because[More...]