mutation vs pharma in our evolution

while stuck on a bus I was listening today to the Functional body modification panel that Quinn Norton gave at 23c3 the talk itself is dated as it happened in 2006 but It contained one thing i was surprised i hadn't heard of a drug called provigil(modafinil) sold by the Pennsylvania-based company Cephalon. provigil's main use is the treatments of narcolepsy, obstructive sleep apnea/hypopnea syndrome, shift work sleep disorder, and ADD whitch is why i was suprised i had never heard its name thrown around. Provigil, or 2-[(diphenylmethyl)sulfinyl] acetamide, is a crystalline powder. The precise mechanism by which it works is unknown, leaving medical authorities to describe it vaguely as a central nervous system stimulant the effect of witch supposedly is a awakeness/alertness/awareness drug with none of the crash it's not a stimulant and dosent produce dependency it keeps you awake and when you want to sleep you just sleep. as Quinn says "Heres the weird thing they discovered if you take provigil after you havent slept you dont pay for not sleeping next time you want to go to sleep you sleep for eight hours and then you wake up and it's like nothing happened" she goes on to describe how it was given to soldiers every eight hours in place of sleep and after 72 hours their performance was better than when they had started. let it be noted that there was one caveat to this perfect record as there always is provigil was given to mice for mice for 78 weeks and to rats for 104 weeks at doses of 6, 30 and 60 mg/kg/day. The highest dose studied represents 1.5 times (mouse) or 3 times (rat) greater than the recommended human daily dose of 200 mg and everything was fine until one day they all dropped dead of bacterial infections. The whole talk was interesting and got me thinking about the possibility that perhaps our evolution is being directed by our inovation instead of stunted by it.

i saw this card today

and thought of you.

this is a great ecards site, btw. enjoy! :)


is chemical modification of the wetware a form of evolution?

who would argue that our actions our stunting evolution? at least, aside from our increasing population, which make any genetic changes pass much slower through the gene pool. human technology is definitely supporting continued population increase.

the real question is, is technology directing our evolution in a positive or negative direction? i think there are probably good examples for either argument, but it is ultimately dependant on what value system you use to determine the answer. if you are looking forward to "evolution" via the cyberpunk future, you probably have a good shot, but you might have to make the sacrifice of going "green" in your consumption now so you might live long enough to experience it.

on the other hand, you can take a drug like this now, stop sleeping, and enjoy twice the bang for your buck. if you don't drop dead sooner. so ylbissop, are you willing to do what it takes to achieve your evolution?


your so smart.

your so smart. Am i willing?.. I doubt it i'm a lazy bastard hehe.