GENE: An Intimate HistorySIDDHARTHA MUKHERJEE Book Number: 84438 Product format: Paperback
Pulitzer-winner Mukherjee here weaves together science, social history and the story of his own family to explain the science of genetics and lay bare the unavoidable influence of heredity upon our lives. With his wonderful way with words and an instinct for the dramatic scene he describes the centuries of observation, research and experimentation from Aristotle and Pythagoras through Mendel and Darwin, Watson and Crick and right up to the 21st century innovators who have mapped the human genome and much more besides. A renowned cancer expert (and thus well-versed in what happens when genes get corrupted) he began to take a greater interest in genetic inheritance when learning about the history of mental illness in his family, which had been kept from him for a long time, which introduced him to a whole new scientific and ethical understanding of the subject. With the ability to create or "write" a genome now within our grasp, thus perhaps predetermining a person's biological fate, now within our grasp, he prepares us for the moral complexity and clinical difficulties involved. Things moving ahead apace and everybody should know what could be on the horizon. 604pp paperback, colour and b/w photos, apologies for small remainder mark.
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