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Tristan Bishop Pan: Are We Ready For the Fountain of Youth on Our Doorstep?

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Tristan Bishop Pan says that until last year, the idea of preventing or even reversing the aging process was possible only in books and movies (witness the 2010 movie Tangled, in which the villain uses Rapunzel’s hair to stay young). Yes, the cosmetics industry bombards us with makeup and lotions designed to keep our skin healthy, but it has never been able to literally stop the reality of our bodies inevitably breaking down. Then, Tristan Bishop Pan reveals, came the announcement in 2020 that scientists in Israel had discovered a way to reverse the aging process. “This is an incredible advancement that brings with it crucial ramifications that we all need to think about,” he believes. “It will change how long humans are able to live, which will in turn change everything about our societies around the world.”

Tristan Bishop Pan explains that the scientists focused on giving pure oxygen to adults over 64 who were in pressurized chambers. “They kept this up under specific conditions for three months, and what they found was that people’s telomeres were affected. This was one of the key indications that the aging process could be reversed.”

If you are unfamiliar with telomeres, Tristan Bishop Pan says, they are the communication points at the end of your cells that allows your cells to communicate with each other and reproduce in a healthy manner. “The longer your telomeres are, the younger you are,” Tristan Bishop Pan says. “As you age and your cells duplicate, those communications abilities and other things break down, making your telomeres get shorter and shorter and shorter. So, in general, the longer your telomeres are, the more youthful you are and the more vitality and vibrance you have because your cells are working the way they’re supposed to.” 

Tristan Bishop Pan explains that scientists have figured out a way to reverse the aging process by lengthening your telomeres. “Think about what this means: we are on the verge of creating a society in which we can manually lengthen your telomeres and treat your illnesses and diseases. We are approaching a day when we may be able to address so many issues. That very well may mean that our lifespan will be longer, something we can currently cannot comprehend.”

Tristan Bishop Pan adds, “Now, let’s put this into perspective and not let it just be sci fi. Back in the 1700s, the average lifespan in England, for example, was only about 35 years. It didn’t get much better in the 1800s, when it was between 30 and 40 years. Now, today, in England, people live on average 79 years, so that’s a big increase due in part to better medical care.”

Tristan Bishop Pan puts forth this scenario: “With our ability to lengthen telomeres, what if we can make our lifespan be 180 years? Wouldn’t that be something? What would be the unintended consequences of a world in which people don’t die until they are much, much older? Overpopulation, crowding, economic systems completely remade, battles for natural resources – that would just be a start.”

Whatever those consequences may be, good or bad, Tristan Bishop Pan believes that there has never been a time in history more exciting to be alive than now. “We are living in a time when the speed of change is the only thing that you can count on as being constant. Taking America back to a time when it was in the golden ages or the better ages is never going to happen. We are living in a time of rapid progress and changing technology, and that means inevitable change, whether you like it or not. We as a society, as a planet, as a galactic federation of planets – yeah, I just went there – is going to change.”

When you can increase a human being’s life expectancy into the triple digits, on average, it will mean fundamental shifts in everything on Earth, Tristan Bishop Pan thinks. “Are we ready for this? Are we thinking far enough ahead to handle what that will result in? Or, are we going to race forward without laying the groundwork for that kind of change? That’s something we all have to think about and address in the months and years to come.”

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