Re: life extension vs. natural law

Anders Sandberg (
20 Jan 1999 12:46:33 +0100

"Gina Miller" <> writes:

> You said:
> One promising possibility is that aging has
> >something to do with metabolism and the stress response (as suggested
> >by the methuselah strain of fruit fly and the CR-related research),
> >which of course means that if you are stressed you will live shorter.
> But what about External stresses? We'd have to have that utility foglet
> going before messing with our molecular structure: and blindly assuming
> that beyond us, there will be no effect. Do you feel that molecular
> structures outside of our body, are without interaction with ourselves?

There are interesting effects of external stresses, not always deleterious (I seem to recall that when London first began to suffer serious smog, heart problems in certain groups increased while it decreased in others; the extra nitrous oxide apparently helped them). Overall, stress is bad for the organism and may activate opportunistic illnesses beside the other negative effects (e.g. loss of hippocampal neurons due to corticosteroids).

However, we don't need utility fog to tinker with our molecular structure, medicine and genetics can do that reasonably well already. What we need is a better idea of where to tinker, in what systems and what genes.

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y