LONGEVITY

Kurzweil predicted that within 15 years – and this was now several years ago – average life expectancy would begin increasing by more than one year per year.

Stories like this one, from the London Telegraph – although certainly not specifically this one, which may or may not ultimately amount to anything – help to see how Kurzweil might prove right:

New Drug Reverses Even ‘Untreatable’ Cancers

Cancer patients may be offered new hope in the form of a harmless virus which can reverse even apparently untreatable forms of the disease when injected into tumours.

By Heidi Blake
Published: 7:30AM BST 19 May 2010

Reovirus, which lives in human respiratory and gastrointestinal tracts without causing any symptoms, can help magnify the effects of radiotherapy in treating even the most advanced cancers, laboratory tests have shown.

Tumours shrank or stopped growing in every patient who underwent radiotherapy coupled with a new drug, Reolysin, which contains particles of reovirus.

One patient had a large tumour mass in a salivary gland which was reduced in size enough to be surgically removed after undergoing the treatment. Another who was close to death with a serious form of spreading skin cancer was still alive 17 months later.

A total of 23 patients with a range of solid tumours including lung, bowel, ovarian and skin cancers took part in the clinical trial. All had stopped responding to traditional therapies but were able to get some pain relief from radiation treatment.

The patients were given between two and six injections of Reolysin in escalating doses, combined with low or high dose radiotherapy.

The primary aim was to test whether the treatment was safe, but researchers also measured tumour responses for 14 patients. Tumours either shrank or stopped growing in every case, the scientists reported in the journal Clinical Cancer Research. . . .

☞ I keep telling you: floss, take care of yourself – and the planet – we could be here a very long time.

(And you keep asking me: “why would anyone want to?” But the way I envision it, I’ll have a lot more hair in a decade or two*; I’ll be smarter**; and I will have finally figured out how to sync iTunes and my iPhone.***)

*Once we first use stem cells for more important things.

**Forget Google Voice – can anyone doubt Google Brain is in development?

***I know, but for some reason, it’s no longer working.

THE SEVENTH AND EIGHTH OF MARC’S 12 MOST USEFUL THINGS

So far, I’ve given you the first through sixth (well, Marc has given them to us). And at the end of this series, I’ll give you the link to all 12.

Today, two more. Why two? Partly because #7 is a little thin (though Marc gave me the mango gizmo and it really does work) and mainly because after yesterday’s market decline, I thought we all deserved some kind of bonus.

7. Easy-slice apples (and mangoes).
Eating apples and mangoes every day might not be useful, but I’m sure it’s healthy. And these de-corers / slicers / dividers work terrifically. I keep an extra Apple divider at work for snacks throughout the day. Oxo Apple divider, $11.99; Oxo Mango splitter, $14.99.

8. Shop smartly.
Amazon Prime gives you free two-day delivery on a large number of products on Amazon. One-day shipping is only $3.99. The service costs $79 per year. But savings on shipping costs will quickly pay for this annual fee. You’ll also be saving time by purchasing household items that you didn’t used to buy online because of shipping cost. No more precious weekend time spent at Target or Walmart. I love it. Amazon Prime, $79 annual fee.

 

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