This episode, I had the honour of speaking with Gerald Pollack. In our conversation, we discuss water, weather, electromagnetic radiation and intentions.

Gerald received his PhD in biomedical engineering from the University of Pennsylvania in 1968. He then joined the University of Washington faculty and is now professor of Bioengineering. He has received an honorary doctorate in 2002 from Ural State University in Ekaterinburg, Russia, and has been named an Honorary Professor of the Russian Academy of Sciences and foreign member and Academician of the Srpska Academy. He received the Biomedical Engineering Society’s Distinguished Lecturer Award in 2002. In 2008, his colleagues chose him as the recipient of his university’s highest annual distinction; the UW Faculty Lecturer Award. Pollack is a Founding Fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering and a Fellow of both the American Heart Association and the Biomedical Engineering Society. He received an NIH Director’s Transformative R01 Award. He was the 2012 recipient of the Prigogine Medal for thermodynamics of dissipative systems, and in 2014 he received the Scientific Excellence Award from the World Academy of Neural Therapy, as well as the Dinsdale Prize from the Society for Scientific Exploration.

Gerald has been one of my scientific heroes for several years now. He is open-minded, inquisitive, rigorous, patient and has a broad background of experience. I became familiar with his work when I became interested in water. He was the name that was thrown around by everyone who was looking into water as a therapeutic and as a repository for information. Jerry’s book, ‘The Fourth Phase of Water’ has become something of a cult classic, outlining more about what we don’t know that what we do about this humble, life-sustaining substance. The book is brilliant and gave me what I felt to be an insight into the future of biology. We understand water as this liquid that we get from a tap and we drink it sometimes to keep our bodies hydrated. Because of its seeming simplicity and essentiality for life, it’s easy to think that we know all there is to know about water. In the book, Jerry goes to great lengths to detail the most cutting edge research (as well as the research that was left behind) in a way that infants could understand – a true sign that he is an expert. Water constitutes approximately 70% of our bodies by weight, but by molecular count, water makes up over 99.99% of our molecules. By considering the gravity of this statement, it’s possible that in studying human health, we’ve managed to leave out the most important molecule; water. Jerry has put more clarity to the concept of ‘structured water’ that was speculated long before his work in the field. His contributions have allowed us insight in to the way cells function by using the unique properties of water. Inside our bodies, water can undergo phase transitions whereby it can be an unstructured fluid, or a highly organised gel. Harnessing the ubiquity of infrared radiation, water more readily undergoes this transition leading many to believe that this process contributes to the sun’s capacity to provide the feeling of health. I see Pollack as a true inspiration as he’s one of the few researchers who says what he thinks may be happening (with due caution) even if the studies have not been able to proceed yet. I see this as a highly admirable quality and one that I hope more researchers adopt. As a result, he has forwarded many ideas about how this cellular water can contribute to health. It is likely that substances the promote water structure are good for health, and substances that are detrimental to health reduce the structure. This is exactly what he found in one of his papers.  Gerald’s contributions to science are going to be recognised as some of the most important in the last century. I believe his coming books will continue to help people rethink biology at the most fundamental level.

Gerald has authored several books, most notably ‘Cells, Gels and the Engines of Life’ as well as ‘The Fourth Phase of Water’. Both of these books outline the details of his own and his predecessor’s research on water and cell biology.
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