SECRET LIFE OF GENES: Decoding the Blueprint of Life

SECRET LIFE OF GENES: Decoding the Blueprint of Life

DEREK HARVEY    Book Number: 89428    Product format: Paperback

How does evolution happen? What is a double helix? (The shape of DNA, in case you wanted to know!) The answer is genes, and this book is the key to decoding the complexities of genes, the 'blueprint of our lives.' This guide explores the genome using easy-to-follow explanations and brightly coloured illustrations to carry the reader from the most basics to complex theories. The author looks at everything from the secrets of bloodlines and genes, what genes do and the genetic code, to how we can read DNA, manipulate genes and understand ideas such as variation, mutation and evolution. Discover that all living things are built with a code found in every cell which is the same for every species and learn about how some diseases can be inherited through genes, such as haemophilia which blighted the European royal families from the 19th century as Queen Victoria passed haemophilia on to royal houses in Spain, Russia and Germany through two of her five daughters. Learn about Gregor Mendel's 'Law of Independent Assortment' which suggested gene pairs mingled independently, explaining why one characteristic such as hair colour can be inherited independently of something like a blood group. Opposing views are regularly explained with a study of both the ancient Greek philosopher, Plato's belief that variations were imperfections of an ideal "type" and Charles Darwin's view that there was no ideal type and that natural variation was necessary for evolutionary change. The book features fact boxes which discuss interesting aspects of genes, including looking at identical twins and how they can arise when two eggs are released and both are fertilised or under the rare occurrence when more than one person can develop from a single fertilised egg. Colourful images are used to illustrate concepts including a photograph of albino lion cubs, which is used to demonstrate that a gene variant can stop lion genes from making melanin, giving them white fur. There are also extensive diagrams such as an exploration of how blood cells are made inside the bone marrow from special cells called haematopoietic stem cells. Unpick genetic codes with this intelligent and fascinating book. Paperback, 7.4" x 9.6", colour illustrations and photographs, 192pp.
Published price: £12.99
Bibliophile price: £3.25

Additional product information

ISBN 9781788400251
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