A Crack in Creation

A Crack in Creation

Gene Editing and the Unthinkable Power to Control Evolution

Book - 2017
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Two Berkeley scientists explore the potential of a revolutionary genetics technology capable of easily and affordably manipulating DNA in human embryos to prevent specific diseases, addressing key concerns about related ethical and societal repercussions.
"A trailblazing biologist grapples with her role in the biggest scientific discovery of our era; a cheap, easy way of rewriting genetic code, with nearly limitless promise and peril. Not since the atomic bomb has a technology so alarmed its inventors that they warned the world about its use. Not, that is, until the spring of 2015, when biologist Jennifer Doudna called for a worldwide moratorium on the use of the new gene-editing tool CRISPR--a revolutionary technology that she helped create--to make heritable changes in human embryos. The cheapest, simplest, most effective way of manipulating DNA ever known, CRISPR may well give us the cure to HIV, genetic diseases, and some cancers, and will help address the world's hunger crisis. Yet even the tiniest changes to DNA could have myriad, unforeseeable consequences--to say nothing of the ethical and societal repercussions of intentionally mutating embryos to create 'better' humans. Writing with fellow researcher Sam Sternberg, Doudna shares the thrilling story of her discovery, and passionately argues that the ability to rewrite the code of life comes with enormous responsibility. With CRISPR, she shows, we have effectively taken control of evolution. What will we do with this unfathomable power?"
Publisher: Boston :, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt,, 2017
ISBN: 9780544716940
0544716949
Characteristics: xx, 281 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Additional Contributors: Sternberg, Samuel H. - Author

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StarGladiator
Mar 25, 2017

This began like an extraordinary book, but somewhat through it I began to think this may just be another Davos diva, and sure enough, that and her bio-startups, et cetera. This book does give credence to the fictional novel by John Burdett, The Bangkok Asset [or a Robert A. Heinlein story from yesteryear, where in a future history he suggests a Chinese genetically-engineered super-soldier army invasion, with their playing around with CRISPR and myostatin reduction???], but otherwise, around the end, I was reminded of the horrors of high school chemistry class where, no matter how hard we tried to exactly follow the lab text, those darn experiments just never turned out right!

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