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Re: why 'Martians' should be bipeds (some WoW spoiler)

I think you're assuming too much about the method of elimination. Suppose
Martian biotech is advanced enough that they've created, essentially, a smarter
white blood cell, either genetically modified themselves or created a nanobot
that is designed to monitor and kill any and all hostile infections?

I don't think this would stop the eternal problem of how to _recognize_ a hostile infection as such. For example, some bacteria (was it leprosy... I forgot) disguise themselves as cartilage/connective tissue. (Capsule made of hyaluronic acid.) This can't be recognized as foreign because it simply isn't.

Of course these bacteria stay sensitive to antibiotics -- but show me any currently used antibiotic, and I'll show you a strain of pathogen that is immune to it. The lecture "Introduction into Genetics" mentioned a strain of bacteria, isolated from a hospital infection, that was immune to 5 or so antibiotics plus mercury at once, the resistance genes being packed into transposons -- which means all those genes, alone or in packages, can easily jump between species.

Sure, things like eradicating smallpox are possible. But, in the long run, I think you can speed up the arms race, but you can't outsmart evolution -- because evolution uses smarter methods than mere intelligence. "Life will find a way." <feeble attempt at getting back to the topic>