Blood Matters: From Inherited Illness to Designer Babies, How the World and I Found Ourselves in the Future of the Gene

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9780151013623: Blood Matters: From Inherited Illness to Designer Babies, How the World and I Found Ourselves in the Future of the Gene

In 2004 genetic testing revealed that Masha Gessen had a mutation that predisposed her to ovarian and breast cancer. The discovery initiated Gessen into a club of sorts: the small (but exponentially expanding) group of people in possession of a new and different way of knowing themselves through what is inscribed in the strands of their DNA. As she wrestled with a wrenching personal decision—what to do with such knowledge—Gessen explored the landscape of this brave new world, speaking with others like her and with experts including medical researchers, historians, and religious thinkers.

Blood Matters is a much-needed field guide to this unfamiliar and unsettling territory. It explores the way genetic information is shaping the decisions we make, not only about our physical and emotional health but about whom we marry, the children we bear, even the personality traits we long to have. And it helps us come to terms with the radical transformation that genetic information is engineering in our most basic sense of who we are and what we might become.

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Book Description:

HMH hardcover, 2007, Previous ISBN 978-0-15-101362-3

From the Back Cover:

Having inherited a heightened risk for cancer, a journalist travels to the frontlines of genetics and finds both personal guidance and a fascinating new world of scientific discovery

 

ADVANCE PRAISE FOR BLOOD MATTERS

"Blood Matters is beautifully written--and that is the least of its charms. Masha Gessen's new book takes its readers from the leading edge of modern genetic medicine through the hardest, grittiest kind of daily, personal experience, questions literally of life and death. Ultimately, Gessen gently, unflinchingly confronts the hard choices that come from our deepening knowledge of our genetic selves. The story she tells has versions encoded in every human being alive--which means that she has written both a marvelous read and an important book."--Thomas Levenson, author of Einstein in Berlin

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