Seawater has many uses - some might help humanity to survive a little while longer.
Planting evidence - by Richard Milton
For eight years, from 1875 to 1883, a German biologist named von Herzeele conducted several hundred experiments in his Berlin laboratory which so outraged the scientific community that his books were removed from libraries and his writings banned. The subject that so outraged his colleagues is today a taboo question that can scarcely be mentioned in polite scientific circles. It is the apparently innocent question: where do the minerals in plants come from?
Von Herzeele grew plants without soil, using solutions whose mineral content he measured and controlled. Like scientists before him in England, France and Germany he found that there were elements in the ashes of the plants he grew that could not have got in from the growth medium. He concluded that 'plants are capable of effecting the transmutation of elements.'
Professional oblivion inevitably followed and it was not until the 1940s that open-minded biologists rediscovered von Herzeele's work and tried to replicate it. M. Baranger at the Ecole Polytechnic, Paris, decided to repeat von Herzeele's experiments but with tighter controls and greater precautions against error. He also performed a much larger number of experiments. His study lasted four years and involved thousands of analyses. Baranger measured the phosphor, potassium and calcium content of vetch seeds before and after germination in twice-distilled water. In some cases pure calcium chloride was added.
Baranger found that, in the case of seeds germinated using added calcium chloride, they experienced a 10 per cent increase in their potassium content and a significant decrease in their phosphor content. He concluded, 'These results, obtained by taking all  possible precautions, confirm the general conclusions proposed by V. Herzeele and lead one to think that under certain conditions the plants are capable of forming elements which did not exist before in the external environment.'
Subsequent experiments at some of the world's leading institutions have confirmed these general findings. In 1946, the director of the Dinard Maritime Laboratory, Henri Spindler, investigated seaweed and found that the algae Laminaria manufactured iodine out of water which did not contain this element. In 1959, Dr Julien at the University of Besancon found that if he placed tenches into water containing 14 per cent sodium chloride, their production of potassium chloride increased by 36 per cent within four hours. And in 1965, H. Komaki, professor of applied microbiology at Mukogawa University, Japan, reported the formation of phosphorous in a wide range of microorganisms grown in a medium deficient in Phosphorous.
Komaki suggested that nuclear reactions were taking place in the cells of the microorganisms. The best-known modern researcher of biological transmutation is Louis Kervran at the University of Paris. Kervran has been nominated for a Nobel Prize for his work in this field. He has elucidated many of the nuclear reactions involved and sought to explain them. 'The vital phenomenon is not of a chemical order,' he says. 'The nucleus of the atom in light elements is quite different from what nuclear physics regards as the average type, the latter having value only for heavy elements. . . Nature moves  particles from one nucleus to another -- particles such as hydrogen and oxygen nuclei and, in some cases, the nuclei of carbon and lithium.' 
'Biological transmutation,' says Kervran, 'is a phenomenon completely different from the atomic fission or fusion of physics.' 
Stimulated by Kervran's results, other laboratories have conducted experiments, many obtaining similar results. In 1971 The labs of the French Society of Agriculture tried germinating rye seeds. They found that the initial input of 13.3 milligrams of magnesium dropped as low as 3.2 milligrams (a fall of 335 per cent) while the initial input of 7.3 milligrams of potassium rose to 16.6 milligrams (an increase of 133 per cent).
It is fair to add that scientists at other institutions have attempted to replicate these results and have found no evidence of transmutation (for instance professor Jungermann at University of California in 1977 and Carolyn Damon of the US Customs in 1978).
In 1978 Solomon Goldfein of the US Army's Material Laboratory at Fort Belvoir suggested a possible mechanism for biological transmutations. He suggests that such transmutations would most likely involve an organic molecule with a central metal atom: Magnesium Adenosine Triphosphate (or Mg-ATP).
Goldfein says that a stack of these molecules could form a helical chain. The Mg-ATP could also produce oscillating electric currents which act as a microminiature cyclotron, accelerating hydrogen ions to speeds near that of light and giving them enough potential to transmute an element to the next higher number in the table of elements.
Most remarkable of all, of course, is the thought that, if nuclear fusion is taking place in plants, microbes and fish, then it is certainly also taking place in our own bodies.
Originally published in "Alternative Science" column in Mensa Magazine

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