Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Age Reversal Technology...

Will modern Science be able to stop aging?  Will it be able to reverse it?

Ever since Ponce de Leon, in the minds of most Americans, man has dreamed of a sort of youthful immortality.  
"...every 30 seconds, a patient dies, who could have been treated with tissue replacement." Dr. Anthony Atala

To achieve this goal, it seems to us there are only two options.  The first option is to be able to understand the aging process and then to be able to reverse it in our tissues.  The second option, is much more radical, it is to be able to replace our organs, as needed, with artificial ones which can be easily repaired or replaced.  Under this first option, there are several sub-options, that are explained in the term, "regenerative medicine."  With the first option, it would seem logical to think that there must be a limit to the rejuvenation.  At some point, the original cells may not be able to rejuvenated any longer.  When this happens, we will have to switch to the second option anyway.  So it seems logical to conclude that the second option, that of artificially replacing the organs and body parts is the long term goal to achieve a form of immortality.  This is the position of the Transhumanists.  

Newborn Screening Saves Lives of Act of 2007
President Bush signed into law, a process that will have all new born children screened for heritable disorders at their birth hospital, by the Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children.  They are to:
1) making recommendations that include the heritable disorders for which all newborns should be screened; (2) developing a model decision-matrix for newborn screening expansion; and (3) considering ways to ensure that all states attain the capacity to screen for the recommended conditions. Sets forth deadlines for the Secretary to make a decision on Advisory Committee recommendations.
According to the law, the DNA extracted from the newborns, will become the property of the Federal government, and, will be used for research.

Cellular Memory
Some people who have had heart transplants have stated that over time they assume some of the personality of the previous owner.  To most scientists, these claims are seen as anecdotal.  They claim that there is no possibility that a cell or organ, could retain any "memory" of its previous owner.  Yet recently there was an article published in Nature, which showed how very simple organisms were capable of some "memory."

Brilliant futurists, such as Raymond Kurzweil, have espoused this position in several books and many lectures. But how close is Science to realizing this objective?  These videos will deal with issues such as, Cryogenics, artificial organ replacement, cellular memory, regenerative medicine, 

Regenerative Medicine
According to Dr. Atala, of the Wake Forest Institute of Regenerative Medicine, your skin regenerates every two weeks, your bones regenerate every ten years.  This means, that the human body has the ability to regenerate naturally.  The question these doctors are investigating, is how far can that regeneration be taken?  Dr. Atala, and others, are working manufacturing 22 different cell and tissue types listed here.  Here is a video presentation by Dr. Atala:

Dr. Robert Lanza
Dr. Robert Lanza
click to enlarge
Chief Scientific Officer of Advanced Cell Technology (ACT), Dr. Lanza has made breakthroughs in the use of adult stem cells to be able to regenerate tissue and even manufacture blood.  His company is also involved in curing macular degeneration, a incurable, progressive disease, which results in total blindness, through the rebuilding of the retina, by the use of stem cells.

Dr. Thomas Rando
Dr. Thomas Rando
He is professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences at Stanford University.  He is also the Director of the Stanford Center for Longevity. Since 2005, he has done research into blood of different aged people.  He found that the blood of younger people, has a delta protein that when mixed with the blood of older people, acts as a rejuvenator, repairing the older blood cells.  Vampire legends may not be far off about the rejuvenating power of young blood.

Cyborgs - the next generation upgrade for humans
Kevin Warwick
Kevin Warwick, a professor of Cybernetics at the University of Reading, UK, was the first man to implant a chip in his body.  This subject brings us into the world of transhumanism, the idea that we will soon become part human, part machine.  For more information on this, you can read other posts I have on this site.  Watch this video on this new approaching age.

This this revolution is coming is a sure thing, due to the nature of man.  He will do what he CAN do.  No doubt, some of the implications of this technology will be bad for our society.  But this has been true with literally every other piece of technology introduced in history.  Are you ready for it?


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