Nanomachines – more frightening than GMO crops


Richard Moore

One can only imagine what the Pentagon is doing with this stuff. :-(


Original source URL:

Monday, March 19, 2007
Do You Believe in Nanomachines? You Should.

To the disgruntled pessimists who like nothing better than to see the future in 
the most dire terms possible, and who do not believe that nanomachines that can 
ever operate in the human body to destroy pathogens, repair DNA and otherwise 
make us better, faster, smarter, more durable and long-lived will ever become 
reality, I say: Nanomachines that operate inside the human body already exist. 
They comprise what is called the existence proof of the feasibility of such 
technology. I am referring of course to existing protein machines.

Ribosomes, for example, are molecular machines found in all cells which build 
protein molecules according to instructions (programming) read from RNA 
molecules. They themselves are complex structures built of protein and RNA. 
Below is an image of a ribosome.

Another existing nanomachine is the T4 phage. Seen below, this little guy is a 
virus that acts like a spring-loaded syringe and, according to K. Eric Drexler, 
author of Engines of Creation, looks like something out of an industrial parts 
catalog. The virus can stick to a bacterium, punch a hole, and inject viral DNA.

When we try to imagine nanomachines, we often picture tiny robots, complete with
nanoarms and nanohands with which to assemble things. But nanoarms and nanohands
aren't needed. The existing nanomachines we've just seen are, in fact, 
self-assembling. Molecular biologists "have taken the machinery of the ribosome 
apart into over 50 separate protein and RNA molecules, and then combined them in
test tubes to form working ribosomes again."

Drexler explains the process further:

To see how this happens, imagine different T4 protein chains floating around in 
water. Each kind folds up to form a lump with distinctive bumps and hollows, 
covered by distinctive patterns of oiliness, wetness, and electric charge. 
Picture them wandering and tumbling, jostled by the thermal vibrations of the 
surrounding water molecules. From time to time two bounce together, then bounce 
apart. Sometimes, though, two bounce together and fit, bumps in hollows, with 
sticky patches matching; they then pull together and stick. In this way protein 
adds to protein to make sections of the virus, and sections assemble to form the

The problem with these protein-based entities, and in fact all protein-based 
life, is that proteins are not very durable, strong, or intelligent. Which is 
why the concept of building nanomachines out of carbon nanotubes is so 
important. Below is a conceptual image of a carbon nanotube nanobot, the likes 
of which scientists at Rutgers University believe will be injected into the 
bloodstream to administer drugs directly to an infected cell. They envision this
happening by 2020.

What is amazing to me is that the general public, and even much of the 
scientific community, is unaware of the progress already being made. When they 
are first introduced to the concept of nanomachines operating inside the human 
body, and are apprised of how soon this will occur, many react as if it is 
downright nonsense. But it isn't. It's coming sooner than you think. I for one 
am among the expectant throng of those who believe.

Posting archives:
Escaping the Matrix website:
cyberjournal website:

Community Democracy Framework:

Subscribe cyberjournal list: •••@••.•••  (send blank

cyberjournal blog (join in):

Moderator: •••@••.•••  (comments welcome)