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She Has Her Mother's Laugh: The Powers, Perversions, and Potential of Heredity (2018)

por Carl Zimmer

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7571729,911 (4.14)27
Presents a history of the human understanding of heredity and how it has shaped society, chronicling the transitions brought about by genetic research and making predictions about how evolving understandings are likely to impact the future.
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Mostrando 1-5 de 17 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
Amazing. I'd read The Gene: an Intimate History by Mukherjee and Genome: an autobiography of a species in 23 chapters, by Matt Ridley, so I was familiar with some of the things discussed in this book, but there were still things I hadn't encountered. at over 500 pages it is a fairly hefty book , and thorough, but not exhaustive. I found myself looking for more information on tantalizing stories he'd briefly mentioned. It is an overview, really, with good science anchored by human stories and welll worth a read. The mother who delivers a baby and a genetic test in the delivery room says it isn't hers, the parents who lose their daughter in a car accident and harvest her eggs, the mosquito altered by man and able to pass those alterations on through wild mosquitoes. If these stories sound intriguing, give this book a try, you won't be disappointed ( )
  cspiwak | Mar 6, 2024 |
One of the most fascinating books I have read. The history of man, heredity, genetic engineering in animals, plants and humans. At times a bit technically complex beyond my understanding, but none the less interesting. Questions on ethics and what science risks with experiments and research are discussed finishing with a thought inducing wrap up for the future of our species and our planet. Loved this book. ( )
  PriscillaM | Sep 9, 2023 |
Another great introduction to genetics, this is relatively non-technical with an historical and biographical structure. If the book has a flaw, it is that it covers a lot. The chapter titles are a little oblique, so here is what is discussed:

1. The Habsburgs and the history of our conceptions of heredity.
2. Hugo de Vries, Luther Burbank, Charles Darwin and the history of breeding. Gregor Mendel. August Weissman. The death of the theory of pangenesis and genetic discoveries at the turn of the 20th century.
3. The Vineland Training School, Francis Dalton, Henry Goddard, Charles Davenport, and eugenics.
4. Pearl S. Buck and phenylketonuria.
5. Mendel's law and the origin of life. Bacteria, viruses, and CRISPR. Eukaryotes and meiosis. Thomas Hunt Morgan and Drosophila melanogaster.
6. The author's personal family tree; genealogy; Alex Haley and Roots; Charley Chaplin, ABO blood types, and paternity; the Romanovs and forensic DNA analysis
7. The author’s genome is sequenced. Joseph Chang and we are all cousins. Mitochondrial Eve. SNPs. Race and scientific bigotry.
8. Big data and the analysis of the human genome. The chopstick effect. The origin of Ashkenazi Jews. Svante Pääbo, David Reich, and ancient DNA. Neanderthals and Denisovans.
9. The genetics of height. Nature and nurture. Genome-wide association studies. Polygenic and omnigenic traits.
10. The genetics of intelligence. Nature and nurture. Twin studies. Karl Pearson. Cyril Burt. The Flynn effect.
11. Embryology. Mary Lyon and the X chromosome.
12. Witches’ broom and somatic mutation. Joseph Merrick. Cancer. Mosaicism.
13. Chimeras. Devil facial tumor disease. Canine transmissible venereal tumor.
14. Bacterial symbionts. Mitochondria.
15. Peloria. Epigenetics. Lamarckism. Trangenerational epigenetic inheritance.
16. Culture and memes.
17. CRISPR. Ground cherries. Donor insemination. Genetic engineering. In vitro fertilization. Three parent children.
18. CRISPR. Germline editing. Stem cells. In vitro gametogenesis.
19. The possible consequences of CRISPR gene drive and what we've already done to our biosphere.

I've been asked which I would recommend more highly, Zimmer's book or Adam Rutherford's A Brief History of Everyone Who Has Every Lived. There is nothing wrong with reading both, but if you only want to read one, I guess I would recommend this book if you know very little about genetics and Rutherford if you know more. [In retrospect, I don't think that is true, and I guess I would say that you can flip a coin and that I slightly favor Rutherford's book.]
The author refers to August Weismann as having "squinted" through a microscope, but, of course, that is not how a microscope is used.
The discussion of diabetes as a Jewish disease in chapter 7 is new to me.
The extent of chimerism in normal human development (chapter 13) is fascinating - mother’s have incorporated cells from their children, children from their mothers, and second children may have incorporated cells from their older sibling! The possible link with autoimmune disease in women is also interesting. ( )
  markm2315 | Jul 1, 2023 |
El célebre columnista y escritor científico Carl Zimmer presenta una perspectiva profundamente original sobre lo que transmitimos de generación en generación. Darwin desempeñó un papel crucial a la hora de convertir la herencia en una cuestión científica, pero fracasó a la hora de responderla. El nacimiento de la genética, a principios del siglo XX, pareció hacerlo. Poco a poco, se fueron traduciendo las antiguas nociones sobre la herencia a un lenguaje de genes. A medida que la tecnología para el estudio de los genes se abarató, millones de personas pidieron pruebas genéticas para relacionarse con padres desaparecidos, antepasados lejanos o identidades étnicas. Pero la herencia no se limita a los genes que pasan de padres a hijos, sino que continúa dentro de nuestro propio cuerpo. Decimos que heredamos los genes de nuestros antepasados, pero heredamos otras cosas que importan tanto o más, desde los microbios hasta las tecnologías para hacer la vida más cómoda.
  bibliotecayamaguchi | May 16, 2023 |
3.5* Very interesting book but a little too much information for someone who just wants an overview on the subject. Worth reading though ( )
  LisaBergin | Apr 12, 2023 |
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Presents a history of the human understanding of heredity and how it has shaped society, chronicling the transitions brought about by genetic research and making predictions about how evolving understandings are likely to impact the future.

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