Scientists have announced that they have accidentally created a breed of "super-mice" that live longer, have more active sex-lives, and can eat and eat without putting on weight. They are also fantastic athletes. The gene that they altered is found in humans as well, suggesting that they could just as easily make "super-men".
The first thing that I wondered on reading this was why they always have to make these genetic modifications to embryos - why can't they retrofit us with this? But then, would I reall want this?
What point would a more active sex drive be if you don't have an equally active (or indeed any) partner? Even if you did, you still have to go to work, and make time to cycle up the Alps on a regular basis (see below).
The mice are very active generally. This means that they need more exercise. With my lifestyle I don't get enough for my unmodified body, so this wouldn't be very useful. Apparently a human with this mod would be able to cycle up an Alpine mountain without a break. Great if that's what you want to do, especially if you live in the Alps. Not very useful if you're somewhere a bit flatter.
I could eat loads and not put on weight, but this probably requires you to do the Alpine mountain ride every day - these mice are running non-stop for five hours (6km) at a time.
But surely I'd want the longer life? Well, would I really want to prolong such a frustrating and hyperactive existance? I'm not so sure.
There's a less selfish view of this - We're living on a planet with too many people and not enough food. Surely a better modification would be to make us eat less, have a shorter lifespan, and procreate less?
Meanwhile the mice will make great pets - they won't die as often and their hyperactivity will keep the kids amused for longer. Though if they ever escape, you'll never be able to catch them...