395 pages, 1 colour & 4 b/w illustrations
Would you change your genes if you could? As we confront the 'industrial revolution of the genome', the recent discoveries of Crispr-Cas9 technologies are offering, for the first time, cheap and effective methods for editing the human genome. This opens up startling new opportunities as well as significant ethical uncertainty. Tracing events across a fifty-year period, from the first gene splicing techniques to the present day, this is the story of gene editing – the science, the impact and the potential. Kozubek weaves together the fascinating stories of many of the scientists involved in the development of gene editing technology. Along the way, he demystifies how the technology really works and provides vivid and thought-provoking reflections on the continuing ethical debate. Ultimately, Kozubek places the debate in its historical and scientific context to consider both what drives scientific discovery and the implications of the 'commodification' of life.
1. Crispr, Cas and capitalists
2. The gene trade
4. We can play God in that cell
5. Modern Prometheus
7. Life in a bubble
8. To summon a Leviathan
9. A molecular fairytale
10. Secrets from a freshwater fish
11. Gene hackers
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James Kozubek is a staff scientist at the Brigham and Women's Hospital with affiliation to the Broad Institute of Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Kozubek is also an established journalist whose science writing has appeared in The Boston Globe, The Atlantic and Scientific American, amongst others.