The sun has been his enemy for as long as Malakkar Vohryzek can remember. He has to adapt to it for all his life.
Birthmarks immediately pop up when his skin is exposed to the sun. At nine, he tries to bite off these misshapen moles.
From his teens, he has new moles removed every six to eight weeks, hoping those spots don’t develop into aggressive tumors.
Now, the 44-year-old IT consultant from Newbury Park, a small town 45 minutes west of Los Angeles, is doing everything he can to protect himself from the sun’s rays. He fanatically lubricates himself with sunscreen factor 60 and always wears a large hat.
During his studies, he deliberately worked in the so-called graveyard shift of restaurant Denny’s. This service was from late in the evening to early morning. This allows him to travel to and from work while it is still dark.
Living like a vampire.
In 2017, he read about a stunt by Josiah Zayner, founder and owner of The Odin. At a biotechnology conference, he claims to inject himself with CRISPR-Cas9 to stimulate his muscles to grow bigger. “That inspired me,” Malakkar says. Despite Zayner’s experiment failing, Malakkar searched scientific publications for the link between genetics and radiation protection.
He is desperate. Researchers working on genetic modification receive an email from Malakkar: “I offer myself as a human guinea pig. Modify my DNA, so I can live in the sun again!”
Genetic modification, that is the theme of this newsletter. Enjoy reading.
PS. And a personal update: on September 21, our son Hidde Ezra
was born. After a rough start
, mother and child are doing well! 👶