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Ozzy Osbourne To Be Genetically Decoded 256

Posted by samzenpus
from the genes-of-darkness dept.
Dashiva Dan writes "DNA research lab Knome has announced that it is going to sequence Ozzy's entire genome. Ozzy, the former lead singer of Black Sabbath, reality television star, and spokesman for World of Warcraft among many other things, has been selected so they can discover, among other things, how drugs are absorbed in the body. The amount of abuse Ozzy has put himself through and survived is a large part of why he was chosen."

*

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Ozzy Osbourne To Be Genetically Decoded

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @08:48PM (#32597414)

    Eating the heads off Bats. It gives him superpowers .... Shwing!

  • Survived? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by JorDan Clock (664877) <jordanclock@gmail.com> on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @08:50PM (#32597422)
    I think this all really hinges on your definition of "survived."
    • Re:Survived? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by blair1q (305137) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @08:53PM (#32597454) Journal

      In this case it's, "made more money letting a few cameras wander around his family's life than in decades of laborious rock and roll."

    • Re:Survived? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by interkin3tic (1469267) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:00PM (#32597518)

      He's more coherent than a lot of younger meth or crack users out there.

      • by CAIMLAS (41445) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @10:23PM (#32598036) Homepage

        Watch: after finding out that Ozzie's DNA has decayed to only slightly-worse-than-average they get permission to dig up his mom and dad and sequence their DNA. The result will be astounding: they'll be from out of this world.

        The secret to human evolution, it will seem, may have been drug abuse.

      • Re:Survived? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @10:26PM (#32598044)

        The reason is the drug war. In the olden days, Illegal drugs were made by professional chemists in white coats who had pride in the quality of their product.
        It also had the backing of big money from that are better unnamed sources and pure intermediate chemicals to work with.
        Today, It's made using the simplest and usually worst methods, using filthy chemicals by thugs.

        • Re:Survived? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by hitmark (640295) on Thursday June 17, 2010 @12:34AM (#32598756) Journal

          makes one wonder how it would have worked out, had it been sold next to alcohol.

          • Re:Survived? (Score:5, Interesting)

            by fractoid (1076465) on Thursday June 17, 2010 @02:37AM (#32599282) Homepage
            I read a short story recently that described a guy from 2100ish re-engineering his liver to produce heroin and then going back in time with the intent of investing the drug money and becoming rich. When he arrived back in present-day America it was this utopia and the only difference was that all drugs were legalised (and hence there were no drug gangs, no cartels, far fewer deaths due to questionable-quality black market drugs etc.) I've googled for it to no avail, can anyone name the story?
          • by Xest (935314)

            If the amount of alcohol abuse that goes on in the UK is anything to go by then I suspect there'd be a lot more Ozzy Osbournes roaming the streets.

            I know it's popular amongst some to suggest that because the war on drugs hasn't worked, the answer is the absolute opposite i.e. that legalisation of drugs would solve the problem, but I suspect that the real answer is that whatever you do drugs will be a problem, the difficulty is finding the balance which lessens the problem the most. Again, if alcohol or ciga

        • To use the show Breaking Bad as an analogy, it's Walter White vs. Jesse Pinkman. Who would you want making your drugs?
        • Re:Survived? (Score:5, Informative)

          by DesScorp (410532) <DesScorp@NOsPam.Gmail.com> on Thursday June 17, 2010 @02:20AM (#32599220) Homepage Journal

          The reason is the drug war. In the olden days, Illegal drugs were made by professional chemists in white coats who had pride in the quality of their product.
          It also had the backing of big money from that are better unnamed sources and pure intermediate chemicals to work with.
          Today, It's made using the simplest and usually worst methods, using filthy chemicals by thugs.

          You have a very idealized version of drug use's "Good Ole' Days". There really weren't any. To begin with, the first Federal prohibition against drugs didn't come until 1914, when the Harrison Act was passed. And many of the drugs on the prohibited list aren't very common on the streets today.

          Do you know when America had its biggest addiction problem, by far? If you said "the sixties" or "today", you'd be flat wrong. The high water mark for addiction in this country was between the Civil War and right before WWI. Between 2 and 5 percent of the population was addicted to drugs. And I mean really addicted. Do you know who helped cause this? Dirty street pushers? Columbian gangs? No.

          Doctors.

          That's right, our biggest addiction rates came from the men in "clean white coats".... but it was all legal. After morphine became widely available, doctors so overused opiates for even minor patient problems that addiction became common. You could literally go the hospital with a middling ailment and come home addicted to morphine.

            Do you know what the most common profile of the American drug addict was prior to WWI? The white, middle class housewife. The closest thing to a "drug pusher" was the snake oil salesman that offered a bottle of liquid for whatever ailed you. And that bottle was often up to 50 percent morphine-based, and was often cut with dangerous chemicals. So much for pride in quality of the product.

          There are legitimate criticisms of the drug war, many of them. But don't pretend that before the "drug war" that we didn't have a huge problem. The biggest aid in bringing down both the addiction rate, and cleaning up the quality of drugs? A government law. The Pure Food and Drug Act of 1906, which prohibited the consumption of opiates without a prescription.

          • Re:Survived? (Score:5, Insightful)

            by damienl451 (841528) on Thursday June 17, 2010 @05:20AM (#32599942)

            That's right, our biggest addiction rates came from the men in "clean white coats".... but it was all legal.

            [...]

            The biggest aid in bringing down both the addiction rate, and cleaning up the quality of drugs? A government law. The Pure Food and Drug Act of 1906, which prohibited the consumption of opiates without a prescription.

            Presumably, obtaining a prescription would not have been very hard if, as you argue, doctors were so keen on giving morphine to their patients. I think your post is quite self-contradictory. If the large addiction rates came from men in clean white coats, then the Food and Drug Act would not have made any difference. Might it not be like OHSA, i.e. the law came into force as other factors were influencing drug use/workplace safety and did not directly cause any change? Could it not indicate that, by 1906, people, including the government, had realized the risks associated with the use of morphine and were becoming less willing to use it? This would make a lot of sense since the Act was only passed *after* journalists wrote scathing articles about the patent medicine industry. Another element that bears this out is that Coca Cola stopped including cocaine in its beverage in 1903.

            Furthermore, the Act did not even prohibit the consumption of opiates without a prescription. Rather, it imposed mandatory labeling requirements for drugs and food containing alcohol, opiates, etc. Most of the rules laid out in the Act are common sense rules that are simply meant to prevent fraud and ensure that individuals can give informed consent before taking a drug. Seems a lot better than assuming that people can't make the right decision when they are presented with all the facts. My point of view is that drug abuse and alcoholism were rampant in the 19th and early 20th century because standards of living were much lower, many diseases that are now considered minor inconveniences could kill you, and, for many people, life was overall much less enjoyable than it is now. Given these constraints, it is understandable that these people would have different time preferences than we do and favor present enjoyment (i.e. getting high, smoking, etc.) over future benefits.

          • Idealists! Sheesh! (Score:3, Interesting)

            by celtic_hackr (579828)

            You have a very idealized version of drug use's "Good Ole' Days". There really weren't any. To begin with, the first Federal prohibition against drugs didn't come until 1914, ... The high water mark for addiction in this country was between the Civil War and right before WWI. Between 2 and 5 percent of the population was addicted to drugs. And I mean really addicted. Do you know who helped cause this? Dirty street pushers? Columbian gangs? No.

            Doctors.

            That's right, our biggest addiction rates came from the men in "clean white coats".... but it was all legal. After morphine became widely available, doctors so overused opiates for even minor patient problems that addiction became common. You could literally go the hospital with a middling ailment and come home addicted to morphine.

            ...

            You have a very idealized notion of American history, and an odd definition of doctors, and a very warped perception of the 60s and 70s.

            First off, most of the "medicines" you mention in the 1800s were discovered by doctors and scientists, but produced by both reputable companies and charlatan con artists. Not to mention many addictive drugs were simply added to food stuffs to give them an extra boost. Addiction in children and housewives and men was not so much abuse by the doctors but greed by legitimate c

    • bouymen didi surviveorSURVIVEDidunno WHAT yourtryinto saybout me MAN survival im striving surviving man i dunnowhatyer talking someone wheres my drin i said ineed mydrinkwhered didiput the keyys

      SHARRRRRRRRRROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONNNNNNNNNN

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by kiwijapan (1293632)
        " Ozzy Osbourne To Be Genetically Decoded" So that's why we can't understand what he's saying .... it's all encoded. Doesn't seem that complicated a code though; I'm pretty sure one of the boffins at Bletchley Park could figure it out in a few days ... (former) President G.W. Bush on the other hand - there's a challenge that would stump even the geniuses over at the NSA.
      • by Jeian (409916)

        I seriously wish I could mod this higher than 5.

      • by mjwx (966435) on Thursday June 17, 2010 @01:58AM (#32599134)

        bouymen didi surviveorSURVIVEDidunno WHAT yourtryinto saybout me MAN survival im striving surviving man i dunnowhatyer talking someone wheres my drin i said ineed mydrinkwhered didiput the keyys

        This is the sound of your average Yorkie, sober.

    • by sg_oneill (159032) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:15PM (#32597610)

      I think this all really hinges on your definition of "survived."

      "Somehow isn't dead after snorting the entire cocaine output of a small south american nation."

    • The mans the picture of health, both mental and physical.

  • by blair1q (305137) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @08:51PM (#32597436) Journal

    Do they have any of Ozzy's old DNA?

    i'd love to see a before-and-after diff...

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      At worst they can probably check his kid's dna to get a rough idea.

      Also, I'm not entirely sure, but I don't think(?) that anything other than radiation can break down dna.

      • Retroviruses would work. Or, you know, normal viruses, but those are less science fictiony sounding, and usually don't get 100% coverage.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by hedwards (940851)
        All sorts of things can, from free radicals, to cell duplication to sun exposure. But in this case they aren't interested in that so much as what about his DNA might have contributed to him surviving that much abuse.

        It's hard to say, but he could always just happen to represent the long tail of the distribution.
      • by interkin3tic (1469267) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:11PM (#32597576)

        Also, I'm not entirely sure, but I don't think(?) that anything other than radiation can break down dna.

        Epigenetics are proving to be far more influenced by our environment than we thought. Here's one article [medicalnewstoday.com] that suggests BPA affects the epigenetics of mice.

        As far as DNA goes, it's actually pretty easy to break down or otherwise make inoperable. Ionizing radiation does do it quickly, but normal cellular processes even damage it. Thousands of chemicals and proteins are mutagenic. Fortunately, your cells, skin, and clothing help protect the DNA, and there's a lot of active repair. Still, it seems that many (almost all?) cancers are caused initially damage to the DNA.

        Many drugs probably have mutagenic properties and could damage your DNA. Having said that, it wouldn't make -specific changes- to the DNA in your -whole body- and thus would not fundamentally alter your DNA sequence. Maybe cocaine would cause breaks in your DNA at random places. There's a lot of DNA, the chances that it would break your DNA at a specific point in every single cell in your body... it's virtually impossible.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by ZirconCode (1477363)
        No, a Common mutagen (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mutagen) are Alkaloid plants (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alkaloid) which include Cocaine. I'm sure there are more but that's what I was able to figure out after a quick google.
      • by JWSmythe (446288) <jwsmytheNO@SPAMjwsmythe.com> on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:16PM (#32597616) Homepage Journal

            With the bit I know about street drugs, and the amount he has done over the years, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if some was tainted with some sort of radioactive material. I'm afraid to know many radiation tainted drugs came out of Eastern Europe around 1986/1987.

            I knew someone who OD'd (and survived). I knew what drugs she thought she had been taking. I also had the opportunity to read her toxicology report. Thank goodness it wasn't a postmortem report, and she gave it to me to read. The report almost read like a complete list on every street drug and several pharmaceuticals. Everything *EXCEPT* for the ones she had taken. For some reason, I pictured a drug manufacturer sweeping the floor, taking everything that was the right color, and pressing it into the pills she had taken.

            The report didn't have anything else on it, so I'm guessing they didn't test for heavy metals or anything of that sort. If they had, I wouldn't have been all that surprised to see mercury and lead in the list.

        • by Cryacin (657549)

          Thank goodness it wasn't a postmortem report, and she gave it to me to read.

          Yes. Thank goodness. Or else... ZOMBIE!!!

        • by Kaeso (1275972) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @10:16PM (#32598000)

          The report didn't have anything else on it, so I'm guessing they didn't test for heavy metals or anything of that sort. If they had, I wouldn't have been all that surprised to see mercury and lead in the list.

          As for Ozzy, he at least ought to test positive for heavy metal...

          • Re: (Score:2, Offtopic)

            by JWSmythe (446288)

                hehe. Ya, but as far as I know, that kind of metal isn't poisonousness. Well, unless you talk to some religious nutjobs, but they'll tell you sex and drugs are bad too, and we all know that isn't true. :)

      • by dmomo (256005)

        I don't think the point here is to see what drugs do to your DNA (if anything). It's to see "just what is it about this Rockers DNA that allows him to still be alive"?

    • by JWSmythe (446288)

          I was thinking something similar. With everything he's done, there's a possibility his DNA is tainted beyond recognition. Before and after comparisons would be great.

          Don't do drugs kids, it'll melt your DNA. Don't be like Ozzy. :)

    • by oztiks (921504)

      diff -q ozzy-dna.01-01-1980.c ozzy-dna.01-01-2010.c

  • Must really hate bats.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @08:59PM (#32597510)

    Congratulations to Knome on a PR scheme that's getting them mainstream advertising for almost no money [ksl.com]. I haven't seen this much bogosity from actual scientists since they shot John Glenn into space [google.com] to "learn about the effects on space on old people".

    I'm sure they'll find the drug abuse resistance gene in no time. (Which seems like a really priority scientific endeavor.)

    Will their next genetic decoding involve LiLo? TMZ wants to know.

    • by treeves (963993)

      "drug abuse resistance gene"

      Ha. That's a different meaning of "drug abuse resistance" than the D.A.R.E. project had in mind!

      Ability to survive lots of drug abuse vs. ability to resist using drugs of abuse. I'm not sure which genes (if they exist) would be better to have.

      • by Sarten-X (1102295)

        Having a natural resistance to drugs' effects is a good thing, especially if other effects come through fully. Consider the possibility of having strong narcotic-based post-surgery painkillers with fewer or even no adverse effects. This could be a small step in that direction. There's lots of chemicals out there that have great uses, except for the minor detail that they're toxic.

        Being outlawed doesn't make a chemical bad. It just makes the chemical illegal.

        • by fractoid (1076465)

          Having a natural resistance to drugs' effects is a good thing, especially if other effects come through fully. Consider the possibility of having strong narcotic-based post-surgery painkillers with fewer or even no adverse effects.

          What's the difference between "drugs' effects" and "other effects"? I don't like the idea of strong narcotic-based post-surgery painkillers having no effects because I had a natural resistance. :S

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by joeflies (529536)

      Will their next genetic decoding involve LiLo? TMZ wants to know.

      Why would anyone want to genetically decode LiLo? Isn't everyone using Grub by now?

    • by epp_b (944299)

      I'm sure they'll find the drug abuse resistance gene in no time. (Which seems like a really priority scientific endeavor.)

      Yeah, what a silly endeavor. It's not like there are millions of people who need to take powerful pharmaceuticals multiple times a day to maintain a normal level of health or even to just stay alive.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    then implant it into an organism, you get a clone of Satan.

    Now that I think about it, I remember some fanatics saying that the antichrist will be born in a test tube.

  • Better idea (Score:5, Funny)

    by lyinhart (1352173) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:04PM (#32597538)
    Should've chosen Keith Richards. Man's practically indestructible. If we could reverse engineer him, we'd have a genetically perfect superarmy.
  • by AffidavitDonda (1736752) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:11PM (#32597582)
    What about Chucks genome? he is indestructible and, after all, he invented genetics, didn't he? But maybe his genome would be too complicated for research...
    • by Kitkoan (1719118)

      What about Chucks genome? he is indestructible

      You don't pull apart Chuck Norris's genome, Chuck Norris's genome pulls you apart

    • is that they would take the electrophoresis gel, slurp it down like jello, then spit it out as diamond bullets at the researchers. then it would take the southern blot, kick it so hard it would turn into a northern, western and eastern blot and actually blot out the word "southern" from all maps ever printed

      finally, his genes, when put in the polymerase chain reaction, would replicate uncontrollably, each new sequence of chuck norris genes gaining umpteenth levels of mystical levels of martial arts power, until the polymerase chain reaction would actually set off a runaway nuclear chain reaction. the upside of this nuclear chain reaction is that it would create elements never before seen by man, and when overhearing some of the physicists from down the hall the biochemists hurriedly call into their lab that these new elements are supposed to be unstable, chuck norris's genes would be so insulted they would spontaneously stabilize every single radioactive element in the known universe, then spontaneously rewrite the fundamental laws of nature so that radioactivity itself ceased to exist

      • Great. So we get to thank Chuck Norris for being permanently behest to the oil conglomerates.

        THANKS A BUNCH.
    • by GaryOlson (737642)
      You don't take samples of Chuck's genome, Chuck's genome takes samples of you.
    • by H0p313ss (811249)

      What about Chucks genome? he is indestructible and, after all, he invented genetics, didn't he? But maybe his genome would be too complicated for research...

      They already sequenced Chuck, but they only get as far as R O U N D H O U S E . K I C K before the machine breaks.

  • by Dachannien (617929) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:20PM (#32597640)

    I don't think Ozzy absorbs drugs anymore. After all, osmosis only works for moving stuff from high to low concentrations.

    • by Zak3056 (69287)

      I don't think Ozzy absorbs drugs anymore. After all, osmosis only works for moving stuff from high to low concentrations.

      I guess what you're saying is that in Soviet Russia, drugs absorb Ozzy?

  • by dmomo (256005) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:20PM (#32597646) Homepage

    I'm sure publicity is the number one reason. For Ozzy or Knome? I'm not sure. But I can tell you that if they wanted a candidate who has taken great "bodily abuse" from drugs or whatever, they'd have no trouble finding one who isn't a high profile personality.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:21PM (#32597660)

    This is A-C-G-T. This is A-C-G-T on drugs.

  • by Improv (2467)

    Do they think the drugs he's taken changed his genetic code? Really? Either the summary is bad, or whomever is doing this is a bit short on clue.

    • Re:Huh? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Scubaraf (1146565) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:41PM (#32597770)
      Retarded headline. It would be as valid to analyze his iPhone to see how electronics deal with toxins. Sequencing his genome is a publicity stunt. Nothing more.
      • It's a publicity stunt, but it's not "just" a publicity stunt: epigenetics research can use this sort of information, and Ozzie is an easy choice given that it's out in the open. As others have pointed-out, though, having samples prior to his binge of abuse would be useful: maybe him mom has hair or a foreskin laying around from childhood (yes, people do actually keep that sort of stuff).
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by jd (1658)

          It's not just =a= publicity stunt, it's a publicity stunt that will have tens of thousands of screaming rock fans getting sequenced, and will have preachers claim that if you play the DNA backwards over some iron filings, you can hear "The soda's in the fridge, all hail the antichrist" repeatedly.

          • by H0p313ss (811249)

            will have preachers claim that if you play the DNA backwards over some iron filings, you can hear "The soda's in the fridge, all hail the antichrist" repeatedly.

            I would sort of expect Ozzy's DNA played backwards to come out as "we apologize for the inconvenience"

        • by Improv (2467)

          Taking drugs will not change his genes! There's no point whatsoever in having genetic samples prior to his drug use. Your genes, with the exception of any cells infected by a virus, affected by cancer, or affected by radiation, do not change over your lifetime. The *only* way I imagine his genes might be interested in any way would be if we suspect he has an unusual resistance to drugs that's genetically rooted, and that's pretty unlikely.

          Any epigenetic effects would also not change his genes, it would only

  • by JustOK (667959)

    The clone would just bark at the moon.

  • by jd2112 (1535857) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:41PM (#32597774)
    But I'd take a Shot in the Dark that it doesn't take Perry Mason to tell that these scientist were riding the Crazy Train. There'll be No More Tears once we learn for certain that The Long Road to Nowhere really does lead to him...
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by h4rr4r (612664)

      I Don't Wanna Stop you but Fools Like You are Time After Time coming up with these lame puns.

    • by Hooya (518216)

      > The Long Road to Nowhere really does lead to him...

      Now, that's just being Paranoid.

  • by Darth_brooks (180756) * <clipper377@gm a i l . c om> on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @09:55PM (#32597862) Homepage

    They wanted to decode Lemmy from Motorhead first, but all of the samples they took came back as being a mixture of Whiskey, Amphetamines, and some sort of superhuman white blood cells that not only could fend off any currently known STD but also had a nasty habit of smashing test tubes and threatening lab assistants.

    Lemmy > Ozzy.

    • Lemmy>God
    • They wanted to decode Lemmy from Motorhead first, but all of the samples they took came back as being a mixture of Whiskey, Amphetamines, and some sort of superhuman white blood cells that not only could fend off any currently known STD but also had a nasty habit of smashing test tubes and threatening lab assistants.

      That's the way he likes it, baby. He don't want to live forever!

  • the shit out of people generation in music ... it was an era. its not like it used to be now.

    the onion had a good piece about this :

    http://www.theonion.com/articles/marilyn-manson-now-going-doortodoor-trying-to-shoc,459/ [theonion.com]
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Manson is pop, he's hardly a logical legacy for Ozzy. Manson is one step further down the wierd train than Lady GaGa, and it's not a big step.

  • Now they can compare his DNA to Kary Mullis and see where (if at all) they differ.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      Now they can compare his DNA to Kary Mullis and see where (if at all) they differ.

      One's a raving lunatic who once did great things under the influence of massive amounts of mind-altering substances, then burned himself out completely and has since turned into a sad shell of his former self ...
       
      ... and the other's an old rock star.

      (They're cops.)

      ((Coming this fall to FOX.))

  • by coolgeek (140561) on Wednesday June 16, 2010 @11:31PM (#32598494) Homepage

    Do you think they'll find any blood in his drugstream?

  • This will be the first time a DNA assay kit gets a contact high.

  • because I think metal, eat metal, breathe metal and metal is runnin' around my brain. I want to know the exact mutations Ozzy has caused in my DNA (for free of course, cause during the decades I've paid the required fees embedded in the 45ers, LPs, CDs, VHS, Betamax and DVDs of His Divine Music.)

    I also want my kids examined, because I fear that I've not been a good father and some of these mutations have escaped me (my son worships Shakira and my daughter is hooked on some weird German punk group called Joh

  • A) He lied about the amount of drugs he took to seem cool to the other kids.
    B) His entire sequence is simply 666ggg666ggg repeated over and over.

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