[CQ-Contest] Natural born contesters

Denis K7GK k7gk at hotmail.com
Tue Apr 3 12:27:04 EDT 2007

While the sunspots are still low and even the activity on this reflector 
seems down, I thought share some info, which I found interesting and 
somewhat related to contesting.

As I was reading a magazine (along with NCJ, QST and CQ sometimes I have 
time for the Economist) I found an interesting article about sleep 
deprivation. The subtitle was - "How well you can think at night may be 
determined by your genes". If that's true, can there be a contesting gene, 
or at least a gene that determines if you can be effective during the second 
night of the 48-hour contest?

Here's a part of the article that I thought was most to the point:

"One of the genes involved in regulating [person's circadian] clock is known 
as PER3 and comes in two forms... The two forms of PER3 translate into two 
slightly different proteins, one of which is longer than the other... People 
with two short versions of the gene (one from each parent) are more likely 
to be “owls”, preferring to get up late and go to bed late. “Larks”—in other 
words, early risers, have two long versions.
Pursuing this line of enquiry, Dr Dijk and his team [at the University of 
Surrey] have been studying how such people respond to sleep deprivation. Two 
dozen volunteers, some genetic owls and some genetic larks, were forced to 
stay awake for two days (note the 48-hour contest connection - K7GK).
The genetic larks reacted to this worse than the owls did. In particular, 
larks given memory tests and puzzles to solve between the hours of four and 
eight in the morning turned in far worse performances than did owls."

Could this be true? It would be very interesting to know if the majority of 
the contesters, especially those turning in 48-hour logs, are mostly owls.

I also wonder if the next big controversy after SO2R and remote contesting 
will be a genetically engineered contester? Just a thought. :)

73, Denis - K7GK

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