Wintersemester 2013 - 2014
– speculative design, functional food, synthetic biology, GMO bread, molecular memory
What if... we could stimulate our memory with food?
In ‘In Search of Lost Time’ Marcel Proust described the unique experience of memory flashback evoked with a bite of madelaine (French cookie) dipped in a tea. Is there any connection between molecules and memory or is it just our sentimental association? Imagine if you would gain extra memory or anti-dementia treatment with your daily sandwich. The GMO techniques enable to improve the plants’ growth or size, so why not go a bit further in order to combine personalised medicine with functional food and create bread based on yeast with, for instance NGF(Neuron Growth Factor- a protein considered as the potential ‘cure ‘ for most of the mental diseases such as Alzheimer or depression) in their DNA? The bread may be ordered in your local bakery based on your health predispositions and personal preference. Specially designed scale based on bread’s mass serves as a user friendly guide for dosing.
Special Thanks to Rüdiger Trojok for scientific-consultation.
No sooner had the warm liquid mixed with the crumbs touched my palate than a shudder ran through me and I stopped, intent upon the extraordinary thing that was happening to me. An exquisite pleasure had invaded my senses, something isolated, detached, with no suggestion of its origin. And at once the vicissitudes of life had become in- different to me, its disasters innocuous, its brevi- ty illusory – this new sensation having had on me the effect which love has of filling me with a precious essence; or rather this essence was not in me it was me.Whence did it come? What did it mean? How could I seize and apprehend it? ... And suddenly the memory revealed itself. The taste was that of the little piece of madeleine which on Sunday mornings at Combray (because on those mornings I did not go out before mass), when I went to say good morning to her in her bedroom, my aunt Léonie used to give me, dipping it first in her own cup of tea or tisane. The sight of the little madeleine had recalled nothing to my mind before I tasted it. And all from my cup of tea. —Marcel Proust, In Search of Lost Time