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Creation: How Science Is Reinventing Life Itself

Creation: How Science Is Reinventing Life Itself

by Adam Rutherford


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Today’s scientists are radically exceeding the boundaries of evolution and engineering entirely novel creatures. Cutting edge “synthetic biology” may lead to solutions to some of the world’s most pressing crises and pave the way for inventions once relegated to science fiction.

Meanwhile, these advances are shedding new light on the biggest mystery of all—how did life begin? As we come closer and closer to understanding the ancient root that connects all living things, Adam Rutherford shows how we may finally be able to achieve the creation of new life where none existed before.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781617230110
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 05/27/2014
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 288
Product dimensions: 5.30(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.90(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Adam Rutherford is an editor at Nature and presents programs for BBC Radio and television. A geneticist by training, he has a Ph.D. from University College London.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

Part I The Origin of Life

Chapter 1 Begotten, Not Created 11

Chapter 2 Into One 31

Chapter 3 Hell on Earth 61

Chapter 4 What Is Life? 75

Chapter 5 The Origin of the Code 89

Chapter 6 Genesis 111

Part II The Future of Life

Chapter 7 Life, Not as We Know It 135

Chapter 8 Created, Not Begotten 145

Chapter 9 Logic in Life 161

Chapter 10 Remix and Revolution 183

Chapter 11 The Case for Progress 201

Afterword 233

Acknowledgments 251

Annotated Bibliography 255

Index 269

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“Rutherford tells the epic history of life on Earth and eloquently argues the case for embracing technology that allows us to become biological designers.”
—ALICE ROBERTS, broadcaster for the BBC, professor of public engagement in science at the University of Birmingham
“Just as the last century was regarded as the golden age of physics, so it is becoming increasingly clear that the twenty-first is the century of biology. This book is the perfect ‘story so far.’”
—JIM AL-KHALILI, broadcaster for the BBC, professor of physics at the University of Surrey, and author of Paradox: The Nine Greatest Enigmas in Physics
“A superbly written explanation of how the origin of life on Earth became a question for science and what the answer might be.”
—BRIAN COX, broadcaster for the BBC, professor of physics at the University of Manchester, and author of Why Does E=mc²?
“Suddenly science is close to understanding the Indian rope trick by which life emerged from non-life four billion years ago. Adam Rutherford has written an engaging account of both the mystery and its impending resolution; he has also provided a fascinating glimpse of the impending birth of a new, synthetic biology.”
—MATT RIDLEY,author of Genome
“A witty, engaging and eye-opening explanation of the basic units of life, right back to our com­mon ancestors and on to their incredible synthetic future. The mark of a really good science book, it shows that the questions we still have are just as exciting as the answers we already know.”
—DARA Ó BRIAIN,comedian

“A crisp, beguiling and rigorous book…”
Los Angeles Times
“Combining superb science writing with a refreshing wit, Rutherford does an excellent job of bringing genomics and synthetic biology to life in this accessible overview of the past and future of the fields.... There’s much to savor here—even in the footnotes.” 
Publishers Weekly (starred)

“Rutherford makes his case with contagious enthusiasm… Genuinely amazing biology is in the works, and Rutherford delivers a fascinating overview.”
Kirkus (starred)
“Engaging… May it augur many more topdrawer science books by Rutherford.”
Booklist (starred)
"Prepare to be astounded. There are moments when this book is so gripping it reads like a thriller."
The Mail on Sunday (UK)

"Suspenseful, erudite and thrilling."
The Prospect (UK)

"One of the most eloquent and genuinely thoughtful books on science over the past decade."
The Observer (UK)

"Fascinating ... The extraordinary science and his argument are worth every reader's scrutiny."
The Sunday Telegraph (UK)

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