X-Message-Number: 1028
From:  (Timothy Freeman)
Newsgroups: sci.bio,sci.med,sci.cryonics
Subject: Re: Better Living through DNA Encryption
Message-ID: <>
Date: 20 Jul 92 17:19:50 GMT
References: <>

In article <> 
 (Peter Alexander Merel) writes:

   I figure that key generation would work a little like this: the sperm
   and the egg contain only unencrypted DNA. We could arrange for them to
   carry cipher DNA and a copy of their public key, but that doesn't seem
   to me to improve security since we're going to generate a new secret
   key anyway.

Oh, but it does increase security.  With unencrypted sperm, the sperm
need to travel some distance during which they'll be vulnerable to
viruses and so forth.  With encrypted sperm, the virus can only attack
the magic box that combines the encrypted genes of the parents to
generate the encrypted genes of the child.

   The result of this process is that every human on the planet will have a 
   different encryption key for their DNA, so even in the extremely unlikely

   event that some warped genius manages to design a virus that can successfully
      patch the DNA of one human, it won't be able to affect anyone else.

Unless it attacks the unencrypted sperms and eggs, or it attacks the
box that creates the child's encrypted genes.

This only stops the viruses that need to splice themselves into the
DNA to reproduce.  If a virus can self-reproduce entirely as RNA, it
gets to keep going in your scheme.

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