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Our Expert Voices conversation on DIY biohacking.

People in 2040 will be manipulating themselves and their gene expression across four general categories: genetic disease, vanity, physical and cognitive performance, and metabolic health and longevity.

The first three categories will align with an individual's innate genetics and cultural preferences. Clearly, if one carries hereditary disease markers for something like cystic fibrosis or Huntington's, those genes will be eliminated, akin to vaccination at birth now.

Appearance will be controlled from the genetic level, but instead of converging into a single, universal beauty standard with the same set of gene manipulations, the multitude of subcultures today — with their own dress, hairstyles, and aesthetic standards — will further differentiate at the genetic level. Similarly for physical and cognitive performance standards, each subculture will optimize for different, and likely antithetical, outcomes. Using sport as an example, powerlifters will choose to up-regulate fast twitch muscles, while marathon runners will further optimize for slow twitch muscles.

Metabolism is how our body's cells produce energy, and longevity is heavily predicated on the efficiency of our metabolism.

Bottom line: Manipulation of genes controlling central metabolic regulators like IGF-1, FOXO3 and sirtuins will allow us to live longer. Biohackers today are already targeting some of these pathways through ketosis and fasting.

Other voices in the conversation:

Go deeper

Democrats eye reconciliation for immigration

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Comprehensive immigration reform is a pipe dream, but some Senate Democrats are hoping to tie key immigration provisions to the next big reconciliation push.

Why it matters: Immigration is one of the most controversial and partisan issues in U.S. politics, which is why the budget reconciliation process — which allows for bills to pass the Senate with a simple majority rather than the usual 60 votes — is so attractive.

3 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Biden meeting Quad amid own pivot toward Asia

Artists paint portraits of President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris in Mumbai, India. Photo: Anshuman Poyrekar/Hindustan Times via Getty Images

President Biden plans to meet this month with the leaders of Japan, Australia and India in a virtual summit of the so-called Quad, according to people familiar with the matter.

Why it matters: By putting a Quad meeting on the president’s schedule, the White House is signaling the importance of partnerships and alliances to counter China’s growing influence in the Indo-Pacific region.

AOC challenges Puerto Rico governor over statehood

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez at New York's Puerto Rican Day Parade in 2019. Photo: Erin Lefevre/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Nydia Velázquez are pushing ahead with a bill in Congress that would let Puerto Rico decide its future — a proposal threatening Gov. Pedro Pierluisi's determination to pursue statehood for the island.

Why it matters: There's an urgency among supporters of statehood to get it done while Democrats control both chambers of Congress, and President Biden has been publicly supportive. But there's a growing divide within the party about whether statehood is actually the best solution for the U.S. territory.