Durk Pearson was born in 1943 and grew up on a farm in Illinois. He was reading by the age of four, and decided to become a scientist at that early age. While a student at MIT, he was a member of the MIT Science Fiction Society and one of the writers for the early underground comic God Comics. He took a triple major at MIT in physics, biology, and psychology, with a triple minor in electrical engineering, computer science, and chemistry, graduating with a B.S. in physics in 1965. His score on the Graduate Record Exam was the highest in the nation for that year. Durk has patents in the area of oil shale and tar sands recovery, lasers, holography, supplement formulations. He worked on all of the manned aerospace programs from Project Gemini to the Space Shuttle and won numerous awards, including an award from the International Society for Testing and Failure Analysis (a professional organization) for his penetrating quality control and safety analysis. He wrote much of the safety manual for the Materials and Processing Laboratory on the Shuttle.
Durk and Sandy Shaw have been featured in interviews and articles in The Wall Street Journal (a front page story on them), Omni (magazine), Penthouse (magazine), Playgirl, Forbes, Newsweek, People (magazine), US Weekly, Fit, The American Druggist, PSA Magazine, Longevity, Men's Journal, as well as magazines in France, Germany, and Japan.
They acted as scientific and technical advisors and received screen credits for the Clint Eastwood movie Firefox (film), designing special effects for all the scenes after Clint got into the Firefox cockpit.
In 1988, Durk and Sandy Shaw released "Life Extension, the Video," produced by Ray Schwartz. The video was designed to explain to the layperson some of the material from all three of their best-selling books on aging, health, weight-loss, and nutrition.
Also in 1988, they co-authored with Steve Sharon The Dead Pool, a high-tech thriller, which was sold to Warner Bros. and made into a popular Clint Eastwood Dirty Harry movie. Durk and Sandy Shaw also have a cameo appearance in the funeral scene.