Happy New Year to all who are following. This year, I hope to cover a little over what I went over last year, and discuss some aspects of how transhumanism can have an impact with our environment and cultures so we can figure out how to correct mistakes, like HIV and AIDS, diabetes, cancers, creating and taking down cell receptors responsible for addiction and more.
So, let’s begin. I have been thinking about how people of younger generations don’t get the meaning of respect, that instead of evolving we are (d)evolving because people are out for image to satisfy their own flesh, and not one another. Of course, John Locke pointed that out several hundred years ago, but it has become more wide-spread, just like strokes are becoming more common in teenagers, something that usually happened to old people, which I will cover later. Now, I have done plenty of scientific investigation as to why these things happens. It turns out that many people have rewired their genetic coding that produces neurosteroids and such that makes proper mental development. It is not only the fact that we are capable of rewriting our genes, but our environment and culture plays an influence, like how much repetition and nurture we have had, and even as babies, how much we have been breastfed. It also depends on how stable your families were, how much positivity you have received, and how personal you have taken negative criticism. All of these play a role on how your thought patterns turn out in the end. Some experience anxiety problems, depression, irritability, and more. I have been trying to look at ways to induce such problems and then get rid of them so we can widen our world view. I have heard that people with too much dopamine gives them illusions like hearing voices of people they talk to a lot among other things. I have never heard voices in my life, but I would be interested in knowing of a way to ingest something that will do it temporarily. Now, as exciting as all this might sound, I want to remind all of you that these scientific findings can help enrich our society so that we wouldn’t have ignorant people questioning those in the minority. Many just tell you the obvious, but hardly don’t get into depth.
Ever since I started paying attention to the news full-time in 2008, I found it quite stupid that we have prisons and we spend time sending criminals to be locked for a costly sum, and then killing them if they do not reform. Many people think it would be dystopian or immoral to send these criminals to science labs to have their brains altered, their body chemistry permanently altered using engineering techniques, and possibly a technique to induce total amnaesia-like characteristics. In a way, you are rewriting their personality. You are using science to turn a bad guy into a good citizen. However, something motivates a person from killing another person. I was wondering, could it be possible to restore a dead person to life if we could salvage their DNA? Their personalities may be the same as the old person, but they wouldn’t have the same memories. They may look the same to you, but something will remind you that it is not the exact person, because they would have to learn everything. They aren’t re-learning, since this is a clone of the person who was murdered. I have asked people from varying religions and many think it is due to choice which one has the ability to make. In dystopian societies, people are prevented from making their own choices so that they would turn out to do good in the community. I think we all have the freedom to make our own choices as long as we have the proper balance in our system, in our bodies, and in everything.
How does a person manage to be motivated to committing a crime when they take drugs that physically addicts them, or as we know, getting them high? Does it cause the brain to mix scenarios in their minds, and make the person attempt those scenarios to see what goes on? Many universities have been looking at the biological and physiological causes of physical addiction to see if we could come up with a cure. In cases where nicotine is inhaled or applied using a skin patch, scientists were trying to create new cell receptors to see if they could stimulate the reward system of the brain. Many people describe it as having a feeling as if something exciting was about to happen (this is how yellow and white light makes us feel). People also say that babies are addicted because of those cell receptors being mutated into their genes, but that only gives me one question. How will that baby know, when old enough that they are addicted if they have never taken that drug before? Will it feel like having this extra sense that you are hungry, but no matter how much you eat or get enough air, there is something that you can’t seem to get unless you stimulate those receptors or destroy them all at once?
Ever since I wrote up that short article on vocal analysis, I came up across something very interesting called the castrato voice. When I analysed the harmonics of these voices, they came out with very unique characteristics that make them sound neither male or female. They have their own way in terms of how they sound. They underwent a lot of training once they have been castrated before puberty, but they grew exceedingly tall, pale-skinned, and had no muscular build at all, and many lost bone density. They weren’t trans because they didn’t undergo hormone replacement therapy, they were just prevented from developing secondary sex characteristics. In the GLBTQIA community, within the arts encyclopedia, they were called the castrati, Italian for castrated in plural. Scientists have been looking at how to recreate the once dead voice into a live voice by using what we know about sound.
A few days ago, I came across some naturopathic ways of treating things like thyroid problems that are sometimes the cause of depression and anxiety, metabolism problems and such, and how we can treat them using amino acids rather than medication that do more harm than good. I have also been trying to see if there were naturopathic neurologists working on a cure to low and high-grade haemorrhages and seizures. That brings me to talking about the split-brain patient. When a person has no way of connecting the two halves of the brains together via the corpus callosum, they end up having unusual visual reactions, and many can draw shapes with each hand independently. Sometimes, people are startled to see that their hand, the one not intended to be used, to move and grab the object. Is there more of a humane way of cutting off the electricity between the regions and the two halves without using surgery? I thought that if we could attach these to sighted people, we could temporarily deprive them of vision and visual memory. Since the year 2009, it has been discovered that we have done a lot of misdiagnosing on people whom we thought were in a coma, but who actually turned out to be fully-conscious and completely paralysed and unable to respond to any kind of stimuli, yet their brain works very well and is still able to perceive and reason. What if a brain transplant could give them deparalysis?
How I plan to do deep-brained stimulation without cutting into the brain and implanting electrodes is going to be the hard part, but when I researched, I discovered I could look at several different inventions and see if I can apply physics to these. We know that the brain uses glucose for fuel. So what if we charged this radioactive fuel with a positive charge, and once the body has been polarised, then all we need to do is discharge it in the right part of the brain. We are fortunate that outer-brain stimulation can be achieved because the electricity goes through the scalp and skull. That’s why we have devices like the neuron-engineering and transcranial magnetic stimulation device, which I think some day will help blind people how to see. In a science-fiction story, it was suggested that if we used this energy, we could figure out if the mind can be altered and carried across the electricity between a body that has been negatively charged and vice versa. The problem is that the mind is not just stored into one part of the brain. The mind is distributed everywhere, which is why mind-uploading would be hard to do, even body-swapping without any form of transplantation. So, what gives parts of the brain responsible for identity?
Understanding Norrie Disease: I have written this next part to see if I could explore some of the rare diseases that make people blind that are among many other rare diseases, so this is just one of such that I plan to write about.
We all know Norrie Disease is a rare genetic defect, but what actually causes it, and how is it present? What treatment and cures are currently being worked on? You will get to know how this disease works once you have an understanding of how genes work.
What are genes? Genes are a set of instructions, composed of DNA and RNA sequences, sort of like the strip of a magnetic strip used by computers to obey certain tasks. Better yet, a gene is like a set of blueprints to build a house. It provides detailled instructions on what the body should produce, when to produce and develop, how to produce, etc. Scientists have begun to understand the aspects involved in eugenics, which is to isolate one good trait over bad ones. Traits are characteristics based on several kinds of genes. There are physical traits such as build, hair and eye colour, body fat storage, bone structures, melanim production, hormone and neurotransmitor production, and many, many more. There are also traits devoted to the brain, called mental (left hemisphere) and emotional )right hemisphere) traits. This includes things like how much hormones you are making, how many neurotransmitors you have present, among many more such as described in the physical traits. Note that these traits can be modified to some extent, but some require nerve stimulation or cell receptors which may be absent if the genes for these are not present. These things are what determines a person’s outlook in life, such as being smart, dumb, and the list goes on.
What happens in Norrie Disease? Typically, this gene attacks the majority of XY chromosomes but rarely XX chromosomes, which is why males are definitely going to have it than females. The gene’s origin begins with a mutation, such as a virus or infection, though the former has shown that these genes can be affected. When Norrie is present, it begins to start damaging cells of varying types in the eyes, and nerve cells in the ears, and in some cases, the brain is affected. Norrie also prevents development of eye functionality during prenatal development, which is why many patients are born without knowing what it is like to see.
How was Norrie discovered? An ophthalmologist from Denmark started studying seven different people from the same family, and each of these people were male, and were past descendants from the first generation. The disease was named after another famous ophthalmologist named Gordon Norrie, who was recognised for his great achievement in working with the blind during the mid to late nineteenth century and into the twentieth.
Causes and Effects of the Gene: Norrie is caused by several mutations found in genes called NDP, located in Xp11.4, and its ID number is 4693). Causes of mutation vary greatly. For future reference, all genes are binary, meaning the gene is dominant or recessive. This means you could carry the genetic coding, you could be mutated with this gene, or both. To illustrate this example, use a Punnett Square that can show you which are dominant and which are recessive. Capital letters indicate positive and lower-case letters indicate negative. In a Punnett Square, there are four letters, sometimes distributed equally, sometimes distributed based on chromosomes, and sometimes distributed by a mix of all of these. In order to understand this concept further, you must know what a phenotype, genotype, hybrid, purebred, pedigree, and family tree is. Better yet, take a genetics-101 course for a non-technical explanation on these terms and their etymologies. It helps if you understand the root and stem words of each term, for this is how they have been coined.
Please note: A mutation is when a given sequence or set of instructions is left unfinished. Take this string of letters, don’t worry about what they mean just yet. A turns into T, T into A, G into C, and C into G. In the second stage, A turns into U, T into A, and C G remain the same. U becomes A, and T becomes A. A very common mutation is TAG, which is usually found at the beginning of a sequence. In genetics terminology, we call this transcription and translation. We say transcription because the gene is being converted from DNA to RNA. Once that’s done, it needs to be translated to form a protein. In other words, mutations finish their job prematurely, leaving the cells affected. This is why people can be mutated to eating certain proteins from products that have them as well as how things are digested like gluten. We will discuss these later on.
What happens when Norrie is present and the gene is mutated? To understand this concept, you must understand how proteins work. We all know that meats and eggs have proteins. in fact, anything that can walk, run, swim and fly has protein. Proteins is what DNA and RNA are composed of. DNA stands for desoxirribonucleicacid, and RNA, ribonucleic acid, is what people use to match characteristics, such as determining which person was responsible in a crime. All of these proteins have a three-dimensional shape, and can be demonstrated using molecular models and high-powered microscope slides. The shape of a DNA is like a spiraling latter with its backbones curving to form a double-helix. The rums of the latters contain four distinct articles, one set on every rum. This DNA can be found anywhere throughout the body, such as skin, hair, blood, and any kind of body fluid.
In Norrie Disease, the mutated gene called NDP, instructs a protein called norrin how to set its foundation. Norrin is responsible for the development of the structures that make up the eyes. As you know, norrin consists of several amino acids that give it its shape. When the NDP gene is mutated, however, this protein doesn’t form properly and becomes mis-folded, giving it an unusual shape. Think about a lopsided house or something of that nature. When this happens the protein is unable to function, and therefore the eyes are unable to develop properly.
Other things Norrie Disease can affect include hearing, balance, excretion problems, and mental development disorders. It is believed that norrin is responsible for supplying blood flow to the retinas, and tissues of the inner ear. This is why it is likekly that Norrie victims will experience hearing loss, because hair cells in the cochlea will eventually die out. There are immature cells forming in the back of the eye, which causes degeneration of important cells and blood vessels. Norrin abnormalities can also affect which parts of the brain are developed, such as neurosteroids and neurotransmitors. However, it should be taken into account that individuals with prelingual deafness are unable to communicate, and for this -reason many blame mental disorders when in fact that is not the case.
Severity of the disease is variant on how many amino acids have been mutated and their location. Few mutations ensures that the person will not be as affected than if a person had widespread complications. It has been documented that males with Norrie disease have behavioural problems, but at this time there are too many biological factors to determine the causes of such findings.
Futuristic Outlook and Testing: As of 2014, little research has been conducted to find better methods of testing the molecular structure and mutation of the genes, and although they are accurate, as far as we know no attempt was made to replace the mutated gene with a healthy one to see if the rewritten gene would correct the protein’s structure. If the protein structure were to be corrected, would the eye structures start developing again, or would we need to turn our attention to finding the right growth factors to get stem cells to grow? Studies have shown that prolonged exposure to how we interact with our environment based on how we socialise and how we identify with our culture gets written into our genetic coding, but there are some genes, such as the NDP that cannot be rewritten once it has been mutated. Current research shows that once a gene has been modified in an organism, that organism usually develops negative side effects, cancer being one of them. We still don’t yet know why this is. Research to sensory substitution and augmentation for people blind at birth still continues, despite the controversy found in the blind community. This may be relevant to how cochlear implants are being contradicted in the deaf culture. It is hoped that a creation of a new virus could reverse the gene’s mutation without leaving harmful side effects in the future.
For further information about Norrie, Go to: http://www.norriedisease.org/
Lastly, why do people not use anaesthetics like nitrous oxide when undergoing cosmetic enhancements, like piercings and tattooing? I don’t see any reason they should, so why shouldn’t they? It is hoped that regrowing tissue with stem cells and right growth factors can replace plastic surgery.