Saturday, 13 February 2010

Ep 122: Science of Superheroes - Wolverine (Part 2)

This is the second part of our series on the science of Wolverine - specifically, how can we create Wolverine in the lab? Join Dr Boob and myself as we journey through Wolverine's characteristics and how they may be recreated in a human. Read more on Wolverine in part 1 of this series. To listen to this show, tune in here (or press play below):



Specifically in this episode, we tackle the topics of:
  1. What would happen to your bones if you completely covered them with metal? Bones are living parts of your body and make red blood cells, platelets and bone marrow - among other things - that are vital for life.
  2. Would a lack of platelets reduce Wolverine's ability to heal?
  3. Wolverine is likely to be on a cocktail of drugs, including anabolic steroids to beef him up, immunosuppressants so his body doesn't reject the metal coating on his bones, and various drugs to supply red blood cells, bone marrow and platelets.
  4. Could we really harness the healing powers of the sea cucumber for Wolverine, and would they work quickly enough?
  5. Are carrots enough to improve his sight?
  6. What metal could we use to coat his bones? It needs to be able to be injected as a liquid and then harden at body temperature. Most steels have melting points over 1000 degrees Celcius, and this would cause terrible trauma to his body. Dr Boob's suggestion was CerroLOW117, which is 44.7% Bismuth, 22.6% Lead, 8.3% Tin, 5.3% Cadmium and 19.1% Indium. CerroLOW117 has a melting point of 47 degrees Celcius, however lead and cadmium both accumulate in the body and have adverse health effects. It is highly likely CerroLOW117 would not be strong enough to help Wolverine anyway.
  7. And what is a phlebotomist?
For more on superheroes, check out our recurring science of superheroes series. And for more from Dr Boob, check out Chris's other contributions.

1 comment:

  1. "Science of Superheroes" is a good attempt to bring science to the average radio listener. Keep up the good work !
    Al

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