Radiation Nation

Radiation-resistant paraphyletic clade

Radiation Nation
Image from Steve Bowers
Hard rad-nad Radiation Nation female with three pairs of eyes adapted for various wavelengths

The Radiation Nation is a common term for a synclade of radiation-resistant human-derived bionts.

Increased radiation resistance was an early addition to the human genome, found in practically all extant clades. Improvements in free radical scavenging and DNA repair had applications both in life extension and enhancing the resistance to radiation in space. The drawback is an increase in energy needs, but for individuals living in technological societies this is not a problem (among formerly technological societies, such as Version War era Klarus, there is a detectable selection effect against this radiation resistance as bearers of the gene prove less starvation resistant).

Radiation Nation emerged in the 3000's AT as a synclade of other clades identifying themselves strongly with radiation resistance, often extending it far beyond the levels ordinarily used among mainstream clades. The most common approach ("soft radnads") uses highly unregulated DNA repair systems, often based on Deinococcus radiodurans and Xenobacter mirabilis from Mykropht III and/or DNA-protecting proteins (based on Ramazzottius varieornatus). Even higher levels are achieved by the "hard radnads" by integrating symbiotic nanotech microbots into their cellular processes. UV absorbing or reflecting skin is also common, as are toxin resistance and enhanced immune systems response.

Radiation Nation members often identify themselves as being the outcasts and scavengers of interstellar society, living in the environments nobody else can stand. While this is true for many societies, there are also clades that exist at the high end of the socioeconomic spectrum, for example the Deines of Hekufast or the Ol Tyranny in the upper NoCoZo. The shared outsidership is rather a way of achieving cultural cohesion and community among the divergent clades. There does not exist any political or economic cohesion in the Radiation Nation, but the shared cultural assumptions help support inter-clade relations, shared projects (such as the recent Bourgatov mining and recovery efforts) and the exchange of biogenetic traits.

Related Articles
  • Bourgatov
  • Deines
  • Hekufast
  • Klarus
  • Mykropht III
  • Naos
  • Radiation - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    [1] Any electromagnetic waves or atomic particles that transmit energy across space.
    [2] One of three modes of heat (energy) transmission through stars or planets from warm regions to cool regions.
    [3] Rapid evolution of a large number of morphotypes from a single ancestor.
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Development Notes
Text by Anders Sandberg
Initially published on 09 March 2001.