Human DNA, Longevity
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I am getting announcements with headlines like “Heaven’s been robbed… Saint Peter is crying!” and claims like “A chance to live forever and remain forever young” or “The fountain of youth may have, indeed, been found.” These claims refer to a new wonder-cure, AKA the “God-Switch” and it’s all in your own body’s DNA; it just needs to be “activated.” “Flipping this switch makes cells in your body immortal, they will not, cannot die!”—say some ads.
It’s no secret that longevity has increased by leaps and bounds. From better prenatal care for expecting mothers to giving birth, our good nutrition and comparatively easier lifestyles have increased the survival rates both of newborns and mothers. Then, all the “well-baby-visits” at your care facility, vaccinations and anti-bacterials against a slew of previously disastrous diseases have had enormous benefits. Together they have substantially decreased mortality of women and children. Nearly everywhere, the average life expectancy of women is now several years higher than that of men.
At the terminus of life, the situation is similar. Better nutrition, fewer accidents, regular checkups, vaccinations, modern drugs and surgical advances have extended the average life expectancy by many years. In Roman times, the average life expectancy was more like 30 years, but now it’s nearly triple that in many countries.
This latest hype though raises the specter of adding another order of magnitude in common life expectancy; that of immortality.
The God-Switch is supposed to be a gene that, when flipped-on, will return the aged, tired, worn-out cells of your body to the biologically pristine state they were on day one—the day you were born. The trick, so the advertisements say, is in managing to flip the right gene, named SP100, at the right time, without affecting others. Actually, the gene needs first to be deactivated and then reactivated, mere semantics.
When properly de- and reactivated, the switch is claimed to not only give you eternal life, but also cure just about any affliction you may have.
Sure sounds good and, as usual, too good to be true.