Body Intelligence

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It is traditional to render intelligence the prerogative of higher life forms and to strictly deny it to simpler forms such as bacteria and unicellular eukaryotes. But such a categorization is predicated on little else but a convenient dualism. It seems more proper to perceive intelligence as a property present in any system to the extent of the structural and functional complexity of that system. Such a redefinition renders intelligence a property distributed among systems, not according to kind, but according to degree.

The human body represents a multiplicity of highly structured physiological processes. This constitutes the body intelligence of the human body. Notable examples of body Intelligence include the processes of DNA replication, transcription and translation, DNA repair, signal transduction, gene regulation, electron transport, and oxidative phosphorylation

Nucleotide repair processes represent one of many examples of body Intelligence in the capacity of repair. Since repair is fundamental to addressing the aging problem, the intrinsic repair capabilities of the human body represent a partial solution to the aging problem. The limitations of the repair processes are inherent and not without value. Beyond the inexorable error issuing from the entropy law of thermodynamics, the error rate of a physiological process such as DNA replication may represent the result of a tradeoff between error rate and metabolic rate. The enzymes and other DNA replication apparatus may simply be incapable of meeting the demands of a lower error rate without compromising speed. Also, errors in the form of mutations are the fodder of the evolutionary process and consequently play a pivotal functional role. Furthermore, it is impossible for a biological system to function without some degree of error as the error-correcting mechanisms are themselves susceptible to error. These intrinsic limitations can only be ameliorated by the external injection of information (mediated by information vectors), or the reengineering of the human body (under the guidance of such disciplines as synthetic biology).

Body intelligence (in the form of repair processes), though it tenders a partial solution, is unsatisfactorily limited. Aging elimination therefore mandates that we venture beyond body intelligence.         

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