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Human Bio-technics (superhuman)

Human Anatomy, Physiology, and Medicine. Anything human!

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Human Bio-technics (superhuman)

Postby joegy » Wed Dec 10, 2008 8:09 pm

Hi all

I had a thought;

Using the principal that humans hardly ever use their full strength potential in their muscles even if we try, except when for example when a mother gains the trength needed to lift heavier objects when her child is in danger or when we are in extreme danger we gain strength previously unknown to us to help prevent the situation for a short time.

Would it be possible to change this by having implants/wires on/in our biceps for example, so that everytime it recognises a signal to move the muscle from the brain, to then overirde it with a stronger electrode impulse or something similar and therefore make the action stronger? So if we made a suit that predicted and increased signals in our arms and legs it made us super strong and super fast, in short a 'super suit'.

Obviously there would be repurcussions such as muscle tearing/ damage, extreme exaustion etc.. but in principle would this work?

Thanks,

Joe
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Postby biohazard » Thu Dec 11, 2008 7:53 am

Yeah, it could be possible to make something like that work. It is pretty easy to cause an extreme muscle contraction by stimulating motor neurons with electricity, and some drugs can do this as well. However, there is a reason why the body "limits" its resources that way: a full-scale muscle contraction has a fair chance of snapping your bones or completely tearing off a tendon, so it's hardly worth the benefit. Most athletes can tell you that they've torn a muscle or tendon during an extreme effort, which means that extensive damage can be caused even without any signal amplification.

Moreover, I believe that such overpowered muscle actions would also severely reduce one's ability to control these movements, so the actual benefit from the possible extra strength gained this way would be difficult to harness in any purposeful manner.
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Postby joegy » Thu Dec 11, 2008 12:43 pm

So would there be no way of controlling the strength of the actions, so to try and work out the maximum 'safe' amplification of the contraction?
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Postby biohazard » Thu Dec 11, 2008 6:09 pm

I guess you could control the magnitude of the stimulus and the subsequent strength of muscle contraction, but I also guess that a healthy human being can generate strong enough muscle contraction to be on the "verge of damage", that is, if you use your full force you are already quite close to causing yourself some degree of trauma. And if you add to that some artificial force, the risk increases. There could perhaps be a small "safe" amplification, but I'm not sure if it would be worth all the trouble.

A professional powerlifter can of course generate and tolerate much much more power than a little girl, but the reason your powerlifter does not rip off his tendons is the fact that he has trained for years and his muscles and connective tissue has strenghtened on the way. But if you add that extra force to the powerlifter's muscle or the little girl's muscle, then both are at risk of damaging themselves. Some kinds of trauma or a powerful seizure can cause someone's muscles to contract so forcefully that they actually suffer a broken bone - and all this force is generated by their own muscles by "natural means", only the mechanisms controlling the generation of force are out of action.

Maybe a person with some kind of muscular dystrophy or neurodegenerative disease would be the first one to benefit from this kind of invention :)
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