Originally Posted by alchemist
There's a long way to go yet before science could nail down every single contributory factor to an individual tumour e.g. knowing that red meat contributes to the risk of colonic cancer on an epidemiological level doesn't mean that an individual can avoid it by avoiding red meat. Controlling exactly what nutrients go in and monitoring what comes out is unlikely to impact on a majority of tumours -- you need to target them more aggressively.
I can see the rationale in putting someone into stasis to stop a tumour growing, but it would have to be true stasis, where every bodily process is stopped. Just slow it down and the tumour will keep taking resources at the expense of the body.
Yeah... this is a book of science fiction and we are moving ahead in time. They have done more to figure out what leads to what. It seems logical that if you controlled every single thing that a person eats, drinks, or breaths, and controlled every other body process, you could eventually learn what does and doesn't contribute to tumors, and turn off the process which causes the tumor. Saying that isn't event adventurous scientifically speaking. They are already saying that.
The correlation between what people eat and cancer is massive, and if I can limit the size of a tumor based on what someone eats now over a period of months, it seems reasonable that fifty years from now I could feed someone something that would remove the tumor. What your saying is in fact, contradicted by today's science. There is very strong evidence that what a person takes into their body is what causes a tumor to begin, nor not begin in the first place, and they've gotten pretty specific about what sort of substances those are. Right now, they give people advice on what to eat to deal with their already existing tumor. And right now people are doing research on what you can give someone to reduce a tumor.
If I said we gave them drugs instead of nutrients, would you have shot at the idea then?
Once again, the idea is that you are controlling every single thing that happens to the body when you put them in this tube, it's a clean room environment. What they eat, drink, breathe... anything they excrete can be measured.
You could do a lot with that. One of things that makes experiments difficult these days is that they give someone a pill each day for ninety days, and he leaves. Different people have different reactions, and they need to figure out why. But it's hard to know all the different things those people did in ninety days. What they ate, where they went and so on.
But if they were in a tube, you just eliminated all of those factors and you can study the process very objectively.
I probably didn't express myself well there. You can speed or slow your metabolism, but if you want stasis for a decades-long journey, you'll have to stop it. You'll have to stop ageing too. Looking at your OP again, I see you're talking about travel within the solar system and not outside, so i may have been shooting ahead.
I'm not stopping their metabolism, and there is more going on then slowing down the metabolism. They are controlling everying that goes in and out of the body and trying to maximize regeneration.
If I said we were giving them lots of chemicals instead of nutrients, would you think that made sense?
Anyway... It's not stasis. I am specifically not doing that. I'm not suggesting that it truly makes them younger, but it improves regeneration and makes them seem younger, at least for awhile. Essentially, in it's current form it does not allow them to live forever, but it will allow them to slow it down a great deal. Eventually they will die anyway, but it will give them a lot more time for exploration.