The Immortality Gene – 2017


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The Immortality Gene explores the belief that we can experience biological immortality through making small adjustments to our genetic code. The project investigates territories between fact and fiction, creating a portrait of a geneticist working at the edge of bio medicine.


Dave Brockenbaker claimed to have discovered the Immortality Gene in the late 1960’s, a dormant signaling gene which if activated could re invigorate systems connected to illnesses such as dementia, cancer and coronary heart disease. Considered a forerunner of gene therapy and a proponent of genetic determinism, Brockenbaker believed that genetic research could lead to a science of predestination. Due to funding cuts in health care and the controversial nature of Brockenbaker’s work, his research was left incomplete at the moment of his untimely death in 1971.