Ozzy Osbourne is to have his genome sequenced by scientists desperate to know how the hell he’s managed to stay alive.
Geneticists in biohazard suits gave the £27,000 test to the dove-devouring, bat-biting Black Sabbath singer to try and find out how specific genes can protect against the effects of drug and alcohol abuse.
Nathan Pearson, director of research at Massachusetts firm Knome, told Sky News: “Sequencing and analysing individuals with extreme medical histories provides the greatest potential scientific value.”
(Don’t tell a soul, but there’s a personal motive, too: geneticists are notorious party animals. It’s a little-known fact that Watson and Crick were high as kites on acid and booze when they ‘discovered’ the structure of DNA. It isn’t, in fact, a double helix at all, but a simple straight line.)
“Somebody said to me this morning, ‘To what do you attribute your longevity?’ I don’t know,” he once said. “I mean, I couldn’t have planned my life out better. By all accounts I should be dead!”
Of course, Ozzy’s a reformed character now. At our last office party, he restricted himself entirely to wheatgrass juice – handy, as it happened, when we needed a designated driver to take everyone to A&E. In retrospect, the flying competition wasn’t such a brilliant idea.