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Mutation Creates SuperKid

michael posted more than 10 years ago | from the at-least-he-still-needs-to-sleep dept.

Biotech 747

Tzarius writes "It's not exactly regular Slashdot fare, but the NYTimes has a story about a kid in Berlin (now 4 years old) who was born with naturally massive muscles. It's not a new condition, but it apparently hasn't been recorded in humans before. It also looks like the cause is a suppression of the myostatin protein, which could be reproducible." Reader Spazmasta adds "A gene that blocks production of a muscle-limiting protein (called myostatin) has been found in a abnormally muscular German baby. This news comes apparently 7 years after researchers at Johns Hopkins created 'mighty mice' through a related approach, turning off the gene that produces the muscle-limiting protein. I, for one, welcome our new myostatin-free overlords."

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It's destiny (5, Funny)

foidulus (743482) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517592)

he was born to become the governor of California!

Re:It's destiny (1)

sherms (15634) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517732)

No, I could think of a few other states that need him, like UTAH!!!

Re:It's destiny (1)

RevDobbs (313888) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517808)

NEW YORK--Somewhere in Berlin, Germany, is a baby Superman, born with bulging arm and leg muscles.

Uh-oh. Isn't this what Nietzsche [msu.edu] was writing about... and subsequently appropriated by the Nazis to further their ideals? Zee Germans may have a few tricks up zhere sleaves.

PHOTO HERE (5, Informative)

swordboy (472941) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517861)

Photo Here [canoe.ca] .

Cute baby! (5, Funny)

RLiegh (247921) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517595)

Can you get him to give me my car back?

It's not fair dammit! (-1, Offtopic)

Pahalial (580781) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517602)

I wanted to karma whore the google link. Sheesh, since when are story submitters smart?

*cries*

Looks like (3, Funny)

Timesprout (579035) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517606)

The Governator has been playing away from home

So Fark cliches are invading Slashdot now? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517608)

Your dog wants steak.

Re:So Fark cliches are invading Slashdot now? (0, Offtopic)

bandy (99800) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517867)

Still no cure for cancer.

where are the pics? (5, Funny)

Richthofen80 (412488) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517611)

i expect it to be a sitcom-esque situation, where the baby lifts the family car when it gets stuck in the mud.

I demand pictures! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517613)

Yeah, but can he whip my ass?

here's a picture of his asscrack! (5, Funny)

squarefish (561836) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517617)

I'm not kidding! [iol.co.za]

Re:here's a picture of his asscrack! (1, Redundant)

networkBoy (774728) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517701)

um.....
yikes, the article mentions that the whole family is strong.
"Researchers would not disclose the boy's identity but said he was born to a somewhat muscular mother, a 24-year-old former professional sprinter. Her brother and three other close male relatives all were unusually strong, with one of them a construction worker able to unload heavy kerbstones by hand."
-nB

Re:here's a picture of his asscrack! (5, Funny)

greenhide (597777) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517726)

It is an unfortunate photo (it's a pretty gross photo actually, surprised it was the only one they could get their hands on).

For those of you who are afraid to follow the link, in the photo the kid has very well defined leg muscles for a 6 day old baby.

I myself make, uh, plenty of myostatin. In fact, that's my superpower -- making tons of myostatin to keep my body almost superhumanly unmuscled.

Re:here's a picture of his asscrack! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517831)

So help me, but torn between modding this comment as funny and interesting, I chose interesting.

Where's the +1 Interesting, but Disturbing

I, for one, (0, Offtopic)

GillBates0 (664202) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517619)

welcome our new future overlords.

they's us.

boring (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517620)

Big muscleed freaks won't take over the world. on the other hand, tell me when we isolate the IQ genes...it's quite an advantage to be born smart and rich.

HE USES GENTOO!!!!!11 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517622)

ha ha ha gentoy is teh greatast cos it compilled from teh source and is teh 0.0001% faster on my athalong microprocessor 3ghz nforce 3!!11!!!1!!one

Someone.. (3, Funny)

tbaggy (151760) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517624)

Someone told me he's weak to kryptonite...

Re:Someone.. (4, Funny)

WormholeFiend (674934) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517860)

maybe later we can have him fight this other kid, Richard Sandrak...

I dont think Richard is a genetic anomaly though... IIRC his parents are just martial arts and bodybuilding nuts.

Listen to me now.... (2, Funny)

wwest4 (183559) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517633)

and believe me later.

Re:Listen to me now.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517846)

...and think about it some other time...

There must be a major downside... (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517636)

...as there seems to be little evolutionary pressure to supress myostatin in the normal population.

Re:There must be a major downside... (4, Interesting)

Mz6 (741941) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517670)

I was actually wondering the same thing. It's used in cattle and mice now. But what is the downside? Wouldn't everyone want to be big and muscular? This kid can already hold 7 lb weights from his arms, something that adults have a hard time doing. What's the downside to not producing myostatin?

I bet the problem is the heart (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517702)

I bet the long muscles in the limbs might see a benefit, but the heart gets so big it can't pump effectively.

Re:There must be a major downside... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517716)

The downside is that your skeletal structure has to be strong enough to support the extra weight, your circulatory system and lungs need to be able to pump enough blood and supply enough oxygen to all that extra tissue and you need to ingest a hell of a lot more food to provide enough energy to grow and sustain your body mass, which in turn requires your digestive system can process the amount of food you'll need to eat.

Think of it as being obese, but with muscle instead of fat. Why would that be an advantage?

Re:There must be a major downside... (3, Informative)

Nos. (179609) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517790)

And there very possibly is, from the article...

The boy is healthy now, but doctors worry he could eventually suffer heart or other health problems

Re:There must be a major downside... (5, Interesting)

confused one (671304) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517815)

rtfa. They mentioned there's a concern he'll use up all the satellite cells in his muscles (the source of replacement cells when the muscle is damaged). They believe the myostatin works to suppress these cells; and, without it, his muscle repair / replacement mechanism is working overtime. He may end up a man of 30 or 40 with a muscle wasting disorder because he hasn't got the ability to repair damaged cells anymore.

of course, they don't really know. He may live to be 90, still be able to lift 2-3 times his weight, and show no ill effects.

Re:There must be a major downside... (1)

Sir_Limps_a_lot (790892) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517777)

What might happen to his skeleton when he gets too big? Maybe his heart won't keep pace with his muscular growth, either. I agree, there has to be a downside, somewhere. At least, us mortal humans hope so.

Here I come to save the day... (-1, Redundant)

stang7423 (601640) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517644)

Here I come to save the day...

Sorry, you all knew that was coming

Re:Here I come to save the day... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517748)

NO, I DID NOT KNOW THAT WAS COMING! I have to disagree with all my might. Really, what does that mean?! And what are you going to do to save the day? Save whose day? You have just ruined my day, now I have to be angry all day long. Saved the day? More like here you came to ruin my day. So shut up, will you?

It's (the wrath of) Khan! (1)

earthforce_1 (454968) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517648)


A product of late 20th century genetic engineering!

Somebody has to... (5, Funny)

NaugaHunter (639364) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517649)

KHAAAAAN!!!!!

dear god (5, Funny)

insomnyuk (467714) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517650)

Ok, two things about this story are amazing.

Firstly, that a 4 year old toddler can hold 3 kilo individual handheld weights, straight out.

Secondly, that 'many adults' can't hold that much weight. My leatherbound volume of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy has to weigh AT LEAST that much. What the hell is wrong with people?

Re:dear god (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517730)

What the hell is wrong with people?

you do relise that this is /. dont you?

Re:dear god (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517762)

Not to mention that if your arms are short the mechanics of the situation are different.

Re:dear god (2, Funny)

mikael (484) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517778)

Firstly, that a 4 year old toddler can hold 3 kilo individual handheld weights, straight out.

He's only 4 years old and can already carry his own laptop.

I'd hate to be the parent to ask "Where did you hide Daddy's laptop?".

Re:dear god (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517813)

thats 3 15kg weights, 45kgs total. pretty difficult to hold straight out.

Mutants (5, Funny)

pete-classic (75983) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517651)

Well, lets just hope Xavier gets to him first.

-Peter

What's his name? (2, Funny)

Cajunator (572036) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517652)

Let me guess.......Bam-Bam?

Re:What's his name? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517799)

He's German, it's Baum Baum...

Another Photo (4, Informative)

applemasker (694059) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517654)

Courtesy of Yahoo here [yahoo.com] .

Re:Another Photo (1)

LouCifer (771618) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517692)

Bah. That picture doesn't look any different than my 7-month-old son, who weighs in at 23.5 lbs.

Seriously.

Now I need to find some weights and see if he can hold 'em too.

Long term effects (2, Interesting)

Mr. Certainly (762748) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517658)

Troll rant here beware...

What do you think the long term effects of this such a proposed treatment on humans might be by limiting this natural growth limiter?

I'm not necessarily speaking religiously, but isn't some of this stuff supposed to be here for a reason?

well, according to the article (2, Informative)

JeanBaptiste (537955) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517798)

they think he could very well use up his 'sattelite cells' (whatever those are) and his muscles would start to deflate at 30yrs...

Roids (1)

Soporific (595477) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517661)

I wonder if steroids would make this kid even more huge when he gets about high school age and is lifting 500 lbs.

~S

*never* been found in humans? (5, Interesting)

Kainaw (676073) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517666)

I think it goes a bit far to claim that this mutation has NEVER been found in humans. Sure, there may not be any popular hospitals with records of this mutation, but I wouldn't be surprised if it turns out that this mutation happens about every 5-10 years in small areas all around the world.

For an example, there was a kid in my teeny little high school who had a muscular growth mutation. His muscles grew so much so fast that he had regular surgery to remove the excess lumps and knots of muscle. He didn't resemble a body builder. He looked like a mutation with lumps all over his body and scars where they had done surgery. I read this article and wondered if he has the same mutation.

Re:*never* been found in humans? (3, Informative)

Brie and gherkins (778845) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517769)

Sounds a bit more like Von Recklinghausen's disease to me, rather than anything else.

No limit to muscles? (1)

Dark Lord Seth (584963) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517667)

Wait a sec, I'm not a biological specialist, but aren't some vital organs composed of muscles, like the heart? I mean, if there is no limit to muscle growth, eventually the kid's ribcage would cease expendaning when he's full grown and the only way the heart can grow then ( because it's no longer limited ) is to the inside...

Then again, I might be a fool and the heart might be excluded from this or not be made out of muscles at all...

Re:No limit to muscles? (1)

Fulcrum of Evil (560260) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517715)

Then again, I might be a fool and the heart might be excluded from this or not be made out of muscles at all...

The heart is made from a different type of muscle tissue. It doesn't normally grow all that much, so it may no be subject to this myostatin stuff.

Re:No limit to muscles? (5, Informative)

00Sovereign (106393) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517754)

Agreed, as a graduate student in the biological sciences, I know that there may be numerous complications from this muscle growth. It depends on the exact function of myostatin, but some problems could be:

enlarged heart - much like someone suffering from chronic ostructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This causes the heart to work more and eventually fail

pseudo neuronal degeneration - failure of the nervous system to keep rewiring itself to accomodate the new muscles. This would lead to all sorts of failure in motor control, and eventual paralysis

These are just two that I can think of off of the top of my head. There may be other, unforeseen consequences. Of course, he could live a "normal" healthy life and get about 20 gold medals in weight lifting.

uberkind (4, Interesting)

Guano_Jim (157555) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517669)

It's a good thing this kid wasn't born in Germany in the mid-to-late thirties.

What I want to know is:

A. How soon will myostatin inhibiting pills become available and:

B. How soon before jock dads start feeding them to their toddlers.

Re:uberkind (1)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517721)

That was my first thought too. "In Germany? Ja, naturlich!"

makes you wonder... (4, Insightful)

MagicM (85041) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517672)

If in most humans there is a process that actively limits muscle growth, then there must be a downside to being muscular... I wonder what it is.

Re:makes you wonder... (1, Funny)

oni (41625) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517804)

there must be a downside to being muscular... I wonder what it is.

Chicks dig the pale glow of a scrawny computer geek.

Re:makes you wonder... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517836)

The quickest most obvious one that comes to mind, is that having that much muscle, would mean that you'd need alot of energy to maintain them. Now food isn't much of a problem anymore in the western world, but in the past and in many places of africa/asia/SA it can still be a problem, and thus needing to eat alot could be a fatal disadvantage.

Quickshot

Re:makes you wonder... (5, Interesting)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517841)

Starvation.

Think about it. In the wild (i.e., in the hunter-gatherer mode of living that represents most of human existence to date) it's obviously useful to be strong -- but you also have to be lean enough to be fast on your feet, and be able to run long distances, and most important, not burn up too many calories just sitting there. Big huge people don't handle "lean times" (and no wild animal is ever too far away from potential starvation) nearly as well as little, wiry ones.

The pre-industrial agricultural period (roughly speaking, 8000 BC to 1800 AD -- again, a damn big chunk of time) probably exacerbated this with its frequent episodes of famine. These days, we regard it as an aberration when a few million people are starving to death somewhere; for most of recorded history, that has been a fear with which everyone had to live, all the time.

Dire wolves and sabretooth tigers died out. Grey wolves and mountain lions are still here.

Energy (1)

Herz (93540) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517842)

Muscles spend energy when resting too. Good if you want to lose fat, bad if you are low on food.

It bears saying that... (1)

jemfinch (94833) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517677)

THIS STORY IS USELESS WITHOUT PICS! :)

Jeremy (typing some non-caps here to pass the lame lameness filter)

Pics of the kid at school (0)

aapold (753705) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517733)

Though it's hard to see the definition inside those school uniforms: http://www.agh2o.org/badlarp/badlarp_files/musclem en.jpg

Re:Pics of the kid at school (1)

aapold (753705) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517773)

linked version [agh2o.org]

Re:It bears saying that... (1)

Timesprout (579035) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517734)

No it doesnt. It will be tough enough for the kid growing up without people like you needing to look at him as if he's in a freak show.

Myostatin in cattle (5, Informative)

Lust (14189) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517678)

Muscle doubling in cattle with the same gene was publishedin 1997, with extraordinary photos of a Belgian Blue bull: HERE [nih.gov]

It's known already (4, Informative)

luugi (150586) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517679)

Products that claim to regulate myostatin are already used by many athletes and bodybuilders.These guys are always ahead of the game.

Re:It's known already (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517725)

The problem is that the products only "claim" to work. I've seen the "articles" and read all about them, I work in a GNC. It's all bullshit for now, you can't genetically modify yourself with a pill.

Bodybuilders and athletes are not using myostatin blockers. They'll advertise for them, sure, but they know they don't work. Steroids, baby.

One of the X-men? (0, Redundant)

bored_lurker (788136) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517680)

Didn't I just watch this story on DVD last night? I guess we know where this kid is going to school.

Re:One of the X-men? (1)

justkarl (775856) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517758)

abnormally muscular German baby

Well, yeah! It's Colossus. Although, technically, colossus was Russian, but I'd bet that this kid can change his body to steel too.

July Scientific American (4, Informative)

peter303 (12292) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517681)

The cover story in the July Scientific American [sciam.com] is about genetic enhancements of muscle. (They havent put the article online free yet.) The thrust is finding an inhibitor for the muscle-growth inhibitor called myostatin. In the article is a picture of a bovine lacking the myostatin gene. It is so bulked up, that it looks like a cylinder of meat with a nose and four hooves sticking out.

Re:July Scientific American (5, Informative)

Tozog (599414) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517856)

It is up for free now here [sciam.com] .

The method in the article is gene therapy, replacing the natural gene with a gene to block myostatin. The NY Times article talks about a drug antibody to prevent myostatin from reaching muscle satalite cells.

All I want to know is... (1)

celery stalk (617764) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517682)

...when can I get the drugs?

In addition, myostatin blockers could be used as performance enhancers.

The kids school (1, Funny)

uwquazi (590502) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517684)

Wouldn't it just be TOO funny if he ended up at Xavier University in Ohio?

Will be used in athletics for a limited time... (5, Insightful)

SilentChris (452960) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517688)

I like the fact that they're already touting this as an advance for athletics. That is, until people find out that (for example) it increases ALL muscles, including the heart, which'll then overgrow and collapses at the age of 35. There's a reason why mutations don't happen all the time.

Re:Will be used in athletics for a limited time... (2, Insightful)

kneecarrot (646291) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517751)

Or perhaps the muscle will become so developed that it will bring flexibility down to zero essentially rendering the individual athletically useless.

Re:Will be used in athletics for a limited time... (2, Interesting)

julesh (229690) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517830)

My understanding is that short of genetic engineering, there is no way to take advantage of this for athletics.

Of course, that hasn't stopped numerous companies selling "myostatin inhibitors", but from what I've read, none of them actually work.

Re:Will be used in athletics for a limited time... (3, Funny)

presarioD (771260) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517873)

I can see the future:

Ladies and Gentlmen welcome to Bagdad Olympics 2044 were all sorts of mutants will compete for the gold medal.

For the 300m sprint we have Rabbit-Man with a third leg from LegBotics(TM) with the capability to run(TM) and jump(PATENT PENDING) as high as 4m.

Next to him we have MuscleMan(TM) with genetically engineered MuscleSoft(TM) muscles that can boost performance to all time records.

We hope(TM) you enjoy(TM) the games! Here are a few messages for you...


You wouldn't like me when I'm angry... (4, Funny)

FrostedWheat (172733) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517691)

Does he turn green when he's having a tantrum?

Have you never watched German and Russian athletes (-1, Offtopic)

hottoh (540941) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517696)

They are the Russian and German olympian swimmers.

I can see the gold medals now.

Article about this in latest Scientific American (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517698)

Look at Gene Doping [sciam.com] . Look at the bull on page 2.

Here's the article. Registering for news is gay. (-1, Redundant)

DroopyStonx (683090) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517712)

A Very Muscular Baby Offers Hope Against Diseases
By GINA KOLATA

Published: June 24, 2004

The moment the little boy was born, the hospital staff knew there was something unusual about him. His muscles looked nothing like the soft baby muscles of the other infants in the nursery. They were bulging and well defined, especially in his thighs and upper arms.

"Everybody noticed," said Dr. Markus Schuelke, a pediatric neurologist at Charité University Medical Center in Berlin.

The baby, it turned out in the first such documented case in a human, had a double dose of a genetic mutation that causes immense strength in mice and cattle. Drugs are under development that, investigators hope, will use the same principle to help people whose muscles are wasting from muscular dystrophy or other illnesses. Experts say the little boy, now 4½ and still very strong, offers human evidence for the theory behind such drugs.

The boy's story, written by Dr. Schuelke and colleagues, appears today in The New England Journal of Medicine.

At the baby's birth, Dr. Schuelke said, his doctors were worried. The infant was jittery, jerking his limbs, much the way people sometimes involuntarily jerk their legs when they are falling asleep.

"At first we thought it might be epilepsy," Dr. Schuelke said.

After two months, the jerking movements had subsided, but the puzzle of the baby's muscles remained. Then Dr. Schuelke had an idea. He knew that Dr. Se-Jin Lee at Johns Hopkins University, working with mice, had found that when both copies of a gene for a protein called myostatin were inactivated, the animals grew up lean and so muscular that Dr. Lee called them "mighty mice."

It turned out that cattle breeders, decades ago, had stumbled upon the same genetic trick, developing a strain known as Belgian Blue, or double muscle cattle. The cattle are hefty, very meaty and lean, and they, too, researchers later found, had inactive myostatin genes.

"We had a big discussion about what to do," Dr. Schuelke said. "We remembered the mighty mice and the Belgian Blue cattle. This child looked like that."

The child's mother was strong - she had been a professional sprinter in the 100-meter dash - and she came from a strong family. Her grandfather, a construction worker, had unloaded curbstones by hand, hefting stones weighing at least 330 pounds. (There was no information on the baby's father.)

So Dr. Schuelke and his colleagues decided to test the baby and his mother for mutations in the myostatin gene. The mother had one nonfunctioning copy of the gene. In the boy, both copies of the gene were inactive; he was making no myostatin at all. No other family members agreed to genetic testing.

The findings, researchers say, may help scientists pin down why some people find it easy to get strong while others can lift weights day after day to little effect. At least some of this natural variation, they suspect, may be a result of individual differences in myostatin levels.

"If you've looked at pictures of Arnold Schwarzenegger when he was a teenager, he just looked naturally muscular,'' said Dr. Robert Ferrell, a professor of human genetics at the University of Pittsburgh who in a small study found no major genetic differences between professional bodybuilders and ordinary people. "Everyone has run into people like that who have great muscle definition and size. That's what I'm interested in."

Certainly the baby's mutation was unusual, Dr. Schuelke said. He and his colleagues tested 200 people not related to the child and did not find it. But there are many ways to disable a gene, and it is possible, researchers said, that some naturally strong people have myostatin genes that function poorly, or not at all.

Eventually, experts say, it may be possible to use drugs to deplete myostatin. One way to do that could be with antibodies that block it, a path that Wyeth is pursuing. The company has begun safety tests in humans with the goal of treating muscular dystrophy and muscle wasting.

Dr. Elizabeth McNally of the University of Chicago, who wrote a commentary that accompanied Dr. Schuelke's paper, is hopeful. In mice with muscular dystrophy, blocking myostatin helped overcome muscle wasting, she said. There is also the potential to help people who have muscle loss from normal aging or from cancer and diseases like those of the lung or kidneys.

In the future, people may be able to have their myostatin genes tested to decide whether to train to become professional athletes.

"Although the ethics of using such genetic information is questionable,'' Dr. McNally wrote, "the feasibility of identifying this information should not be doubted.''

In addition, myostatin blockers could be used as performance enhancers.

"Myostatin blockade," Dr. McNally wrote, "will probably work its way into professional and amateur athletics, as well as into the ever-growing business of physical enhancement."

But, researchers say, it is too soon to know if such drugs would be safe. While the mice and cattle seem normal, said Dr. George Vlasuk of Wyeth Research in Cambridge, Mass., "the long-term effects of inhibiting this molecule aren't known."

Dr. Schuelke cited one concern: Muscle cells are surrounded by immature satellite cells that lie dormant until the muscle is injured. Then they migrate into the muscle, replacing injured or dead cells. A recent paper indicated that myostatin might normally function to keep satellite cells quiescent. Without myostatin, he said, the satellite cells might be so active building muscle that they become depleted early in life.

For now, the little boy is healthy and very strong, able to hold two 6.6-pound weights horizontally with his arms extended. But while the muscles in his arms and legs are twice as big as the muscles of other children his age, Dr. Schuelke said, "he is not extreme: you wouldn't recognize him if you saw him on the street."

The question is, What will happen when he grows older? Will he be an athlete, a bodybuilder? Or will his satellite cells be used up so that his muscles start to deflate when he is 30 or so?

Dr. Schuelke said he and his colleagues would be following the boy for years to come and eagerly watching what happens.

You idiot. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517770)

The story link already contained the GOOGLE referrer link already. There was no need to register you insensitive karma whoring clod.

Re:You idiot. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517868)

not to mention homophobic...

Re:Here's the article. Registering for news is gay (0, Offtopic)

tiptone (729456) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517871)

posting the article text for karma is gay...

my05t/\t1/\/ (5, Funny)

bl8n8r (649187) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517714)

I am adding this to my spam filter now.

let me get this straight... (1)

jmrobinson (660094) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517735)

we've had heroine babies, crack babies, and now we have 'roid babies??

Bodybuilding... (1)

Mz6 (741941) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517737)

It's already used [bodybuilding.com] for bodybuilders [bodyworks-nutrition.com] ...

Baby's Father.. (5, Funny)

cOdEgUru (181536) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517744)

From the article

There was no information on the baby's father

Second Coming of Christ! This time, he's kicking your ass!!

Re:Baby's Father.. (3, Funny)

WormholeFiend (674934) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517827)

but is he going to forgive the lesbians AND get rid of the vampires?

(see the 0-budget movie Jesus Christ: Vampire Hunter)

hmm.. (1)

leakingmemory (750252) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517747)

Will this be considered doping in sports?

Better contact Professor X.... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517752)

Someones gotta show the superbaby how to use his power correctly, right?

he's 4 right? (1)

surreal-maitland (711954) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517757)

so, when he's 18, i'll be 36 . . . that's not so big an age difference . . . . ;)

mmmmm, tasty buff boys . . . .

Give him steroids... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517763)

...Imagin that kid on steroids. He just might be turn in to superman... on second thought no, bad, bad, bad idea.

required comment: imagin a bewolf cluster....

bodybuilders have been using this stuff (3, Informative)

astanley218 (302943) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517781)

A few years ago I managed a retail health/nutrition shop. Shortly before I left there was lots of commotion over new research involving certain myostatin inhibitors. Once such product was made from a special marine algae. You can read a review about it here [bodybuildingforyou.com] .

Unfortunately, I left the position before I had a chance to discuss with any first-hand users of these things, but it looks like they're still being sold at various web sites, so somebody must think they're working.

Not mentioned in the article (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517787)

the child's parents have decided on the name 'Clark Kent'

Belgian Blue (1)

luiss (217284) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517795)

A picture [sruonline.com] of a belgian blue cattle.

But what happens..... (1)

WyerByter (727074) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517810)

When you cut his hair?

uh oh. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9517811)

*danger* *danger* will robinson, warning warning!

I, for one, welcome our new myostatin-free overlords.

yeah. why don't you just say 'aryan' and get over it...

the more things change, the more they stay the same. good thing we didn't have the science to work all this shit out when mr. hitler was around, eh?

Ramifications (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517840)

This month's Scientific American discusses gene doping [sciam.com] . The basic premise is that the same gene therapies that can help individuals with genetic diseases can be twisted to give athletes an unfair advantage. More massive muscles, more oxygen carrying blood cells, taller, etc. Although it's years away, given the state of drug doping in athletics today, it only seems the next stage.

Hercules (1)

iplayfast (166447) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517866)

I wonder if the same thing happened to Hercules. It would explain a lot wouldn't it?

He killed snakes bare handed when he was a toddler. ref [tufts.edu]

Not a mutation (1)

Saltine (171935) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517876)

I don't think it's a mutation. All the articles say that they have no information about the baby's father. It's obvious to me, at least, that the father is none other than Jor-El, famous Kryptonian scientist. The whole "myostatin" thing is just a red herring to cover up his unfaithfulness to Lara.

picture here! (1)

elinenbe (25195) | more than 10 years ago | (#9517877)

here is a picture of the child. Quite amazing! check out those quads! [yahoo.com]
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