12 user 7 critic

Unnatural Selection 

Enhanced DNA developments trigger an epidemic of rapid aging. Caught among its victims - Dr. Pulaski.


Paul Lynch


Gene Roddenberry (created by), John Mason | 3 more credits »




Episode complete credited cast:
Patrick Stewart ... Capt. Jean-Luc Picard
Jonathan Frakes ... Cmdr. William Riker
LeVar Burton ... Lt. Geordi La Forge
Michael Dorn ... Lt. Worf
Marina Sirtis ... Counselor Deanna Troi
Brent Spiner ... Lt. Cmdr. Data
Wil Wheaton ... Wesley Crusher
Diana Muldaur ... Doctor Pulaski
Patricia Smith ... Dr. Sara Kingsley
Colm Meaney ... Chief Miles O'Brien
J. Patrick McNamara ... Capt. Taggert
Scott Trost Scott Trost ... Ensign


The Enterprise, en route to Star Station India, receives a distress signal from the USS Lantree, a Federation supply ship. When they arrive, they find everyone aboard dying of what seems to be old age. They proceed to the Lantree's last port of call, the Darwin genetic research facility on Gagarin IV only to find that they too are suffering from rapid aging. Picard and Dr. Pulaski clash when she brings aboard one of the children from the station and, in order to complete her examination, takes him aboard a shuttle craft to isolate him from the Enterprise crew. She is soon infected, however, and seems doomed to die of old age, but Picard may have a solution. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »


Official Sites:

Official site





Release Date:

28 January 1989 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Television See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The set at Darwin Station is a recycled set from Knight Rider: Knight of the Drones (1984). See more »


Data identifies the USS Lantree captain as L.I. Telaka. Seconds later, when Picard takes over command of the Lantree, he uses the name Isao as the captain's name. Assuming Captain Picard does not know this captain, he could not know his name. See more »


Commander William T. Riker: [on seeing the dead crew of the USS Lantree] Looks like they had a battle with time.
Lieutenant Worf: And lost.
See more »


Featured in Star Trek: The Next Generation: Shades of Gray (1989) See more »


Star Trek: The Next Generation Main Title
Composed by Jerry Goldsmith and Alexander Courage
See more »

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User Reviews

Another terrible early season episode
4 March 2019 | by mhorg2018See all my reviews

What's worse than a bad episode? A bad episode that's a virtual rip off an original bad episode, in the case, The Deadly Years when the crew is exposed to an aging problem. Barely watchable, this is a highlight by Diana Muldaur as the very Dr. McCoyish, Doctor Pulaski. Her play with Data, as McCoy's with Spock, are amusing, but this episode is a waste of time and effort.

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