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USING GENETIC ENGINEERING TECHNIQUES THAT WERE LARGELY ILLEGAL ON EARTH, THE RANGER CORP HAVE SUCCESSFULLY CREATED MYOSTATIN-DEFICIENT ADULTS TO GRADUATE INTO THEIR M-CLASS ENFORCER PROGRAM. STOCK PHOTO .
For nearly five decades, the Ranger Corp have ruled the streets and kept the peace with their zero tolerance approach to law and order. Their primary tool in the early phase of the Corp was the ruthlessly-efficient "Ranger" recruit who, with his/her military-grade augmentations and re-enforced body armor, were a security mainstay among the Martian cities.
But with growing civil unrest in the community due to accusations of widespread Protectorate corruption, combined with the increased availability of the narcotic Shokk, the Ranger Corp were forced to develop a new system of conflict resolution. They were to name this the M-Class Enforcer, a new unit to operate as an adjunct to the existing Ranger recruit.
THE MECHANISM UNDERPINNING THE PROGRAM IS THE DELIBERATE KNOCKOUT OF THE HUMAN MYOSTATIN PROTEIN (PICTURED HERE IN RODENT MODELS). THE RESULT IS ADULT HUMANS THAT LACK THE MUSCLE GROWTH INHIBITOR. PICTURE LEE ET AL.
Myostatin is a growth and differentiation factor, a pathway that is preserved across diverse species ranging from zebrafish to humans. The protein acts as a negative regulator of muscle growth, determining both the muscle fiber number and its size.
In myostatin "knockout", the genetic switch regulating the protein is switched off, resulting in little-to-no regulation of muscle growth and differentiation. The result is an artificially high number and size of skeletal muscle fibers. Scientists initially began work on myostatin genetic manipulation as a means of treating muscle wasting disorders. The technique was approved on Earth for that purpose alone, but was exploited in the development of the M-Class enforcer on Mars.
While the therapy itself is not illegal, there has been a backlash against the recruiting of pre-pubescents into the Ranger Corp to undergo the therapy, since the most potent effects of myostatin deficiency occur before adulthood. When recruits reach the age of 21, they graduate into the Corp proper to complete their basic training.
With their colossal size and strength, compounded by the same military-grade MagStim implants utilized by the Ranger recruits, M-Class enforcers are generally used for "fast and effective" conflict resolution.
Bangsbo Tamlin, M4 correspondent.