Biohacking is not a term with a clear origin or creator. It is a term that has been used in various ways to refer to a range of activities, including using technology to augment the human body, using biology to solve problems, and making changes to the body's biology for various reasons. In some cases, the term has been used to refer to the practice of using technology to manipulate the body's biology in order to improve health or performance. It is not clear who first used the term or who originated the concept of biohacking.
He is dedicated to biochemistry and biophysics, and now runs a company called The ODIN that sells DIY CRISPR kits, including the CRISPR. When Josiah Zayner saw an executive director of biotechnology pull down his pants at a conference on biohacking and inject himself with an unproven herpes treatment, he realized that things had gone bad. So when Zayner saw the CEO of Ascendance Biomedical inject himself into a live broadcast earlier this month, you could tell that there was an awkward blink of recognition. Ascendance Bio soon fell apart almost comically.
The company's own biohackers, who created the treatment but were not being paid, rebelled and the CEO locked himself in a laboratory. Even before all that, the company made another man inject an untested HIV treatment on Facebook Live. And a few days after the herpes treatment trick without pants, another biohacker who shared laboratory space with Ascendance published a video detailing a self-created gene therapy for lactose intolerance. The stakes in biohacking appear to be increasing.
He is dedicated to biochemistry and biophysics, and now runs a company called The ODIN that sells homemade CRISPR kits, including the self-injected CRISPR construction for muscle growth. He's been criticized for a long time and, of course, he hasn't spoken on behalf of the entire biohacking community. But since even the most visible specialist in biohacking is concerned about the effects of his acrobatics, I asked him to reflect on the latest events. We talked about why Zayner originally injected himself with CRISPR in a live broadcast, why he sees his acrobatics as “social activism gone wrong” and why he's still thinking about selling DIY CRISPR kits.
The interview has been edited and summarized for greater clarity. Why is this guy looking for biohackers and not medical professionals, like a legitimate person would do if you tried to do some kind of legitimate research on genetic therapies? They said, “I don't know, they cost a lot of money and other things. It seems really strange and imprecise for anyone to avoid legitimate researchers. Do you know what? , in a way I blame myself, sincerely.
What it has become now, people see it as a way to get press, publicity and become famous. And people are going to get hurt. I have no doubt that someone will end up getting hurt eventually. Everyone is trying to overcome each other more and more.
It's getting more and more dangerous, like all that lactose tolerance stuff. These guys say they purified a virus and then ingested it. What's too soon and what's too late? I don't know if there is an answer. I don't know if I'm the one to ask that question.
But maybe activists who spread this knowledge, so that people know how easy and accessible it is, can encourage people to push these things forward. Perhaps only because they fear that biohackers will defeat them as well. Maybe because they're afraid that biohackers will do something stupid. I'm not saying I'm 100 percent right.
Obviously, I'm a fallible human being and I also do ridiculous things. I'm sure that my motives aren't 100% pure all the time. There have been people who have contacted us for the sole purpose of buying us things to inject. .
Obviously, we can't stop them from doing so, but we discourage people and try to point them in the right direction so that they can seek knowledge. All the experiments before that, all the YouTube videos I posted before, no one really paid attention to them. It was just the biohacker community. On Facebook, I posted this video the other day.
I bought these silly straw cups as a fun joke. You can drink water with dumb straw glasses and drink beer with it. I posted this video, I thought it was funny, on Facebook and Instagram pretending to be pipetting my mouth with the silly straw glasses, totally like a fun joke. And people took it very seriously.
I was like, “What? I don't recommend pipetting your mouth. I didn't realize what my actions could result. I'm starting to understand that. Biohacking has created a participatory feedback cycle that will ensure that one day their numbers will be much greater than that of traditional scientists.