The Science Times Book of Genetics

ISBN 13: 9781558217652

The Science Times Book of Genetics

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9781558217652: The Science Times Book of Genetics

The best up-to-date journalism on genetics from the Science Times section of "The New York Times". Nicholas Wade, Natalie Angier, Gina Kolata, and other award-winning "Times" writers serve as interpreters and translators of the latest news from the laboratories. They convert technical and perplexing breakthroughts into an enthralling pursuit of news frontiers. Line drawings throughout.

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Review:

Still going through what editor Nicholas Wade calls its "gestational stage," the nascent field of genetics has introduced scientific complexities--and ethical quandaries--that we've only just begun to comprehend. Former New York Times editor and reporter for that paper's acclaimed Science Times section, the ever-articulate Wade has assembled more than 40 articles (including many written by him) tackling the forefront of this young, ambitious field. With the promise of curing cancer, cloning entire organisms, extending life, and perhaps even changing the course of human evolution itself, it's no surprise that genetics has grabbed more than its share of headlines: "Big Picture of Cancer Process Is Being Seen for the First Time," "Can Life Span Be Extended? Biologists Offer Some Hope," "Making an Embryo: Biologists Find Keys to Body Plan."

Along with these attention-grabbers, Wade includes numerous articles that just flesh out the background of the field or that explore the significance of particular genes--"To People the World, Start with Five Hundred" explains how mitochondrial DNA has been used to trace humanity to a surprisingly small ancestral pool, while "Modern 'Wolfmen' May Have Inherited Ancient Gene" shows how atavistic traits can get you a job in a freak show. Rigorous enough for the scientist but not too esoteric for the layperson, this collection provides an approachable, informative primer on the field. --Paul Hughes

From School Library Journal:

YA-A good introductory resource that offers approximately 40 articles on genetic research and news that appeared in the science section of the New York Times in the 1990s. Logically arranged, they are grouped around seven broad topics and present the history, structure, and medical nature of DNA and the ethics of genetics and genomics. A concise introduction to each section presents the issues that will be discussed. Articles are succinct, about five pages long, enabling students to glean information quickly. Line drawings clearly present schematics of genetic processes. However, they were significantly reduced in size to fit the page, so be prepared for small print. The appendix provides a three-page introduction to the subject with technical terms in boldface and defined in context. The table of contents serves as an outline and is the only way to access information on a specific topic. A timely resource for this rapidly changing field.
Gary Fillmore, W. T. Woodson High School, Fairfax, VA
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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