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Posts Tagged ‘evolution’

Wait, what?

Yep, that’s the takeaway from a recent Bloomberg article about humans with (very, very) rare genetic mutations:

These Superhumans Are Real and Their DNA Could Be Worth Billions

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the focus of the article is on drug companies exploiting such mutations to develop new blockbuster products, but let’s just take a second to look at the bottom line:

Rare mutations > affect a tiny percent of the human population = superpowers.
/enough said

Yes, it’s Unbreakable all over again, only this time for real. If there’s a way to convert such mutations into useful (rather than simply profitable) innovations, great. Without (hopefully) the evil mastermind willing to sacrifice innocent lives in the search for outliers.

Are there challenges to life as a “superhero”? Of course, the most obvious being the dramatic downsides for those with dangerous mutations like insensitivity to pain, but I have to say: I find this hopeful.

Why? Because it’s a reminder that there is no one “normal” and that the continuum of human evolution isn’t done with us yet, not by a long shot.

That the range of human experience is deep and varied, and that there is room in our world for everyone.

And that the impossible can, under extraordinary circumstances, become possible.

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Since I’m on an NPR science kick… this article provides a fascinating glimpse of our dual genetic past… and perhaps future?

What Happened When Humans Met An Alien Intelligence? Sex Happened : Krulwich Wonders… : NPR

… most humans on Earth, especially if they descend from Europe and most of Asia, carry about 1 to 4 percent Neanderthal DNA in their cells. Proportions will vary. British comedian Eddie Izzard, discovered he’s 2.8 percent Neanderthal. You don’t carry Neanderthal DNA unless someone up your family tree coupled with one.

So that’s our proof: that our first encounter with an intelligent alien led to … umm, well … more.

 

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