We’re All Mutants: Super Genetics Are Everywhere!

By on May 30, 2014


When I was younger it used to cause me great distress to think I was the same as everyone else. I wanted nothing more than to be taken to one side by my parents someday and told I had special powers, or to be bitten by a radioactive spider and have to join the Avengers…

Over time I came to terms with the fact that I didn’t have super-powers (sort of), but what I learned along the way was that I wasn’t necessarily ‘the same as everyone else’ either. In fact I was pretty weird…

And then from there I would later discover just how different everyone else was from each other as well. To look at other people on the face of it, you would think we were mostly similar when in reality it turns out that we’re actually all vastly different with our similarities really just being superficial. Really we’re all mutants, it’s just a matter of finding out what your special powers are…

People With Two Lots of DNA

For example, did you know that some people have two sets of DNA? This happens when a twin is ‘reabsorbed’ into the other fetus during pregnancy and the parts are then used in order to create an amalgamation of a human called a ‘chimera’. Some people actually have more than one blood type, which is a result of their never-born twins’ cells living on inside of them. And it turns out that ‘chimera blood type’ is not even that rare.

That’s crazy right? There are people walking around right now who are made up of two people. And it’s not even rare! Learning that would certainly make you feel a little more special if you were starting to feel ‘just like everyone else’. (Here’s where I got this stuff on chimera in case you’re interested to learn more)

People Who See Music… And Also: Einstein!

Synaesthesia is the name for a cool condition meanwhile where a persons senses get muddled up and they end up ‘seeing’ sounds as colours or hearing sounds while they read. Again it’s not that rare and it turns out that we may all have synaesthesia to some degree. I mentioned in my article on ambidexterity (which is also a common and strange superpower) that this was partly due to a thicker corpus callosum which is the nerve connecting the two hemispheres of the brain.

And it turns out that a thicker corpus callosum was also potentially what gave Einstein his amazing ‘abstract reasoning’ capabilities. Studies of his brain show that his corpus callosum was physically thicker than average resulting in better communication across the brain regions. But look at anyone’s brains and you’re going to see some distinct differences that completely alter the way that we think and experience our ‘inner worlds’. We have vastly different abilities when it comes to visualization skills, memory, attention, mood and more. Some people ‘hear’ their voice talking as an inner monologue all the time, while other people rarely do. We’ve all wondered at some point whether we see colours the same, but it’s well-known that differences in the shapes of our eyes cause us to see things differently (another reason that beauty really is in the eye of the beholder).

If you really swapped bodies with someone in a ‘Freaky Friday’ type scenario  you may not even recognise the way their bodies perceived the world… In extreme cases these differences can lead to known ‘conditions’ like dyslexia or autistic savantism, but all these traits exist on a spectrum rather than in binary. None of us is the same…

Muscle Development

As a bodybuilder who spends a lot of time in the gym it’s easy for me to see just how different everyone is. On the same exact training program, any two people will develop completely different physiques which is owing to which of their muscle groups are most predisposed to growth as well as how much growth hormone and testosterone they produce, and how fast their metabolisms are. When I train my whole body my pecs grow more than anything else allowing me to do awesome hand-balancing moves. My mate develops awesome traps right away and looks like the Incredible Hulk. Another friend just doesn’t build any muscle because he burns too many calories a second…

You may have read previously that a German baby was born a while back who had super strength. This is due to a mutation that caused him to produce less myostatin – a chemical in the body known to suppress muscle growth. This resulted in a baby who could perform the iron cross and walk well before most other children (more here), and it has been suggested that similar mutations may be present in a number of famous bodybuilders and athletes. A similar mutation might right now be making you better at any number of skills.

You also have a genetic predisposition to fast-twitch or slow-twitch (or ‘super-fast-twitch’) muscle fibre which impacts on your explosive strength/muscle endurance. So if you don’t have chimera blood, synaesthesia, ambidexterity or a magic brain, you may well have super-developed pecs, extra explosive muscle fibre or some kind of interesting genetic mutation going on.

More Differences

Then there’s the fact that we all have different allergies, different tastes, different heights and weights, different skin colours, different voices… and the list goes on. Enough of this ‘we’re all the same really’ crap already!

Add to this the fact that you can develop your body and your brain the way you want to, and that you experience countless further mutations during your lifetime, and it becomes apparent that you really are a freak. And so am I… even if I can’t shoot webs. We are all mutants, we are all awesome, and it’s just a matter of finding how to put our completely unique skill set to proper use.

About Adam Sinicki

Adam Sinicki, AKA The Bioneer, is a writer, personal trainer, author, entrepreneur, and web developer. I've been writing about health, psychology, and fitness for the past 10+ years and have a fascination with the limits of human performance. When I'm not running my online businesses or training, I love sandwiches, computer games, comics, and hanging out with my family.

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