Inheritance: How Our Genes Change Our Lives--and Our Lives Change Our Genes

Inheritance: How Our Genes Change Our Lives--and Our Lives Change Our Genes

by Sharon Moalem MD, PhD


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Award-winning physician and New York Times bestselling author Sharon Moalem, MD, PhD, reveals how genetic breakthroughs are completely transforming our understanding of both the world and our lives.


Conventional wisdom dictates that our genetic destiny is fixed at conception. But Dr. Moalem's groundbreaking book shows us that the human genome is far more fluid and fascinating than your ninth grade biology teacher ever imagined. By bringing us to the bedside of his unique and complex patients, he masterfully demonstrates what rare genetic conditions can teach us all about our own health and well-being.

In the brave new world we're rapidly rocketing into, genetic knowledge has become absolutely crucial. INHERITANCE provides an indispensable roadmap for this journey by teaching you:

-Why you may have recovered from the psychological trauma caused by childhood bullying-but your genes may remain scarred for life.

-How fructose is the sugar that makes fruits sweet-but if you have certain genes, consuming it can buy you a one-way trip to the coroner's office.

-Why ingesting common painkillers is like dosing yourself repeatedly with morphine-if you have a certain set of genes.

-How insurance companies legally use your genetic data to predict the risk of disability for you and your children-and how that impacts the coverage decisions they make for your family.

-How to have the single most important conversation with your doctor-one that can save your life.

And finally:

-Why people with rare genetic conditions hold the keys to medical problems affecting millions.

In this trailblazing book, Dr. Moalem employs his wide-ranging and entertaining interdisciplinary approach to science and medicine— explaining how art, history, superheroes, sex workers, and sports stars all help us understand the impact of our lives on our genes, and our genes on our lives. INHERITANCE will profoundly alter how you view your genes, your health—and your life.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781455549443
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication date: 04/15/2014
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 1,351,431
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Sharon Moalem, MD, PhD, is an award-winning scientist, physician, and New York Times bestselling author of the books Survival of the Sickest and How Sex Works. His research and writing blends medicine, genetics, history and biology, to explain how the human body works in new and fascinating ways. His internationally bestselling books have been translated into more than 30 languages.

Dr. Moalem's scientific work led to the discovery of Sideromycin, a novel antibiotic compound effective against multidrug resistant or 'superbug' microorganisms. He has also been awarded 19 patents for inventions related to biotechnology and human health, and cofounded two biotechnology companies, and served as an associate editor for the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease. Dr. Moalem and his research have been featured in The New York Times, TIME, New Scientist, and on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Today, and CNN.

Table of Contents

Introduction - Everything Is About to Change ix

Chapter 1 How Geneticists Think 1

Chapter 2 When Genes Misbehave 24

What Apple, Costco, and a Danish Sperm Donor Teach Us about Genetic Expression

Chapter 3 Changing Our Genes 45

How Trauma, Bullying, and Royal Jelly Alter Our Genetic Destiny

Chapter 4 Use It or Lose It 59

How Our Lives and Genes Conspire to Make and Break Our Bones

Chapter 5 Feed Your Genes 82

What Our Ancestors, Vegans, and Our Microbiomes Teach Us about Nutrition

Chapter 6 Genetic Dosing 108

How Deadly Painkillers, the Prevention Paradox, and Ötzi the Iceman Are Changing the Face of Medicine

Chapter 7 Picking Sides 123

How Genes Help Us Decide Between Left and Right

Chapter 8 We're All X-Men 139

What Sherpas, Sword Swallowers, and Genetically Doped Athletes Teach Us about Ourselves

Chapter 9 Hacking Your Genome 155

Why Big Tobacco, Insurance Companies, Your Doctor, and Even Your Lover All Want to Decode Your DNA

Chapter 10 Mail-Order Child 176

The Unintended Consequences of Submarines, Sonar, and Duplicated Genes

Chapter 11 Putting It All Together 199

What Rare Diseases Teach Us about Our Genetic Inheritance

Epilogue: One Last Thing 223

Notes 227

Index 243

Acknowledgments 253

About the Author 255

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Inheritance: How Our Genes Change Our Lives--and Our Lives Change Our Genes 1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book could be sumarized in two sentences: Everyone is extremely unique, genetically; no two people respond physically/genetically the same to outside stimulous. The book tells daily experiences of the doctor and all the unusual cases he has come in contact with. I can not recommend this book.