Adam's Curse: A Future Without Men

Adam's Curse: A Future Without Men

by Bryan Sykes
     
 

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The inside story of the Y chromosome's fatal flaw, as told by one of the world's leading geneticists.Male reproductive fragility has been the subject of much highly publicized recent research. Is it possible, asked the New York Times, that men face extinction? Bryan Sykes examines the validity of these shocking reports, focusing on the definingSee more details below

Overview

The inside story of the Y chromosome's fatal flaw, as told by one of the world's leading geneticists.Male reproductive fragility has been the subject of much highly publicized recent research. Is it possible, asked the New York Times, that men face extinction? Bryan Sykes examines the validity of these shocking reports, focusing on the defining characteristic of men: the Y chromosome in their DNA. Guiding his readers through chapters like "The Blood of Vikings" and "Ribbons of Life," Sykes masterfully blends natural history with scientific fact, elucidating the biology of sexual reproduction, modern genetics, and evolutionary biology. He reveals that, while the Y chromosome makes man's existence possible, it also carries within it the seeds of his destruction. Timely and fascinating, this major work covers a wealth of controversial topics, including whether there is a genetic cause for male greed, aggression, and promiscuity; the possible existence of a male homosexual gene; and what, if anything, can be done to save men from a slow, but certain, extinction.

Author Biography: Bryan Sykes is professor of genetics at the Institute of Molecular Medicine at Oxford University and the author of the national bestseller The Seven Daughters of Eve. He lives in England.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publishers Weekly
Well-known Oxford geneticist Sykes (The Seven Daughters of Eve), in this lively and thought-provoking book, gives a genetic twist to the battle between the sexes. All human existence, he says, stems from the battle between the X and Y chromosomes to further their own reproduction at the expense of the other. The Y chromosome is passed on only by fathers, while mitochondrial DNA is passed on only by mothers. Sykes shows that many members of several Scottish clans (most notably the Macdonalds) can be traced via their Y chromosomes back to a common ancestor. Researchers have also been able to trace the extent of Viking settlement and intermarriage in the British Isles and northern Europe through Y chromosome distribution. Sykes's argument for a genetic role in homosexuality will undoubtedly be controversial. Using Dean Hamer's pedigrees, he claims that evidence points less to a "gay gene" than to mitochondrial DNA playing the leading role in a Machiavellian plot to further its own reproduction. Sykes concludes by noting that, as evidenced by declining sperm counts and high percentages of abnormal sperm, among other variables, the Y chromosome is a genetic mess and is deteriorating so quickly that men could become extinct. Those who find that a happy thought will want to snap up this book, as well as readers interested in learning what our chromosomes tell us about where we came from and where we may be headed. 6 illus. (Apr.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780593050057
Publisher:
Unknown Publisher
Publication date:
01/01/2003

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