File Size: 2883 KB
Print Length: 273 pages
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (January 16, 2012)
Publication Date: January 9, 2012
Many historical past buffs know that The country had an ancient Golden Age in which the ruling Muslims created a society tolerant of Jews and other peoples that allowed the flowering of philosophy, literature, poetry and other scholarship. Following your moving of that era many Jews remained in The country, enduring periods of persecution and compelled conversion to Christianity followed eventually by the creation of the The spanish language Inquisition. During this time some families of Conversos, the Jews who got converted to Christianity and were now known as Brand new Christians, achieved distinguished position and were among the Spaniards who went in conquest of the Brand new World. Then in 1492 all Jews were expelled from Spain, leading to a further influx of Jewish families to the Brand new World (in addition to many other destinations). The small portion of these people, quite unbeknownst to themselves, were carrying that fearsome gene that will cause breast cancer most often, but additionally cervical and prostate cancer. Long recognized as an Ashkenazic gene, experts now know that it predates those divisions of the Jewish population and exists in Jews of Sephardi (Spanish) origin, too.
So now the posts of history, religion, Sw American culture, epidemiology, tumor genetics and some of our present day friends and relatives all are coming into one incredibly interesting story. Jeff Wheelwright, a freelance journalist knowledgeable in science, tells the history, leading us from the pressing personal story of the young, cancer-stricken Hispano woman and her family who've existed in the same place for 400 years(! ), moving on to bring in us to leading experts, Spanish and Jewish historical past, and back again to the poignant story of how a single gene can have such a devastating impact on individuals, families and communities. I was struck by how seamlessly the author relocated from one scenario to the next, and a lot remarkably, how beautifully he held himself in the history, simply offering facts, history and observances for the reader to take in without feeling that this individual was twisting anything or promoting his very own agenda. As a fifth-generation Texan Jew-by-choice who has degrees in social science and public welfare I was obviously in heaven! But even if only one topic mentioned is of interest to you, I desire you to read this book. Beyond the specifics of Wheelwright's story, it can provide you with that basis for contemplating the entire world we are now living in in all it's subjectivities as well because the more clear objectivities. How have our own lives been shaped by political or monetary history we are no more aware of? What unknown stories are now living in our family backgrounds that are-right now-shaping who we have been and how we think? At the beginning of this review I said this book might not be for everyone, but I've changed my mind. It IS for all! Read and enjoy!, Whenever I commenced reading, I did not realize how scientific the book would become in tracing a genetic mutation from a specific area in the United States inhabited by American "Indians" to a specific location in Europe reputed for a specific Jewish sect. The author was very good at weaving real life stories into his adventure of discovery. It was difficult to set the book aside for very long. I would definitely recommend this book with the warning that some passages became more difficult due to the medical/genetic explanations which were essential to understanding how the discoveries were made in the genetic field., Couldn't put it down. Typically the author provides a good flow of facts while telling a poignant family saga with compassion and respect., New Mexico's historical past comes alive through the framing device of one woman, whose death from breast cancer illuminates how one gene can be recognized with a particular team of people, how that people's history can be forgotten, how genetic testing for a cancer gene (or more precisely, a broken cancer suppression gene) may become the subject of intensive religious controversy, and how DNA can be used to trace amazing secrets. Because the book focuses on Shonnie Medina, it's being compared to The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, but is actually as much about history and religion and a unique part of the United States as it is about science and the tragic loss of life of young one woman. If you're from NM, ?nternet site am, this book is a must read; if you're interested in Jewish history, in DNA umschlüsselung, or maybe the role history and religion play in modern-day controversies about genetic testing, this any you'll like., For some time I have already been searching for a book much like Rebecca Skloot's book about Henrietta Lacks. Jeff Wheelwright's book examines the population genetics of a particular BRCA1 mutation. Typically the BRCA1 and BRCA2 (breast cancer 1 and 2) genes were first associated to heritable breast and ovarian cancer (HBOC) in the early nineties. Given that the initial discovery of the genes, scientists have recognized many mutations in BRCA1 and 2 that are related to HBOC as well as other malignancies.
The subtitle of the book is definitely a good representation of what is inside; all these topics looked to get equal treatment. When the focus was on the DNA or race, the book kept my interest. However, when the focus was more on religion, I found myself skipping pages. I didn't see how a history and beliefs of the Jehovah's witnesses helped you understand the genetics of this mutation. There were some surface similarities with Rebecca Skloot's book, as both have a very strong human angle. Typically the book was a quick read, it taught me personally some new reasons for having human population genetics and BRCA variations, and it served as an excellent jumping-off point to learn more., There are lots of interesting facts in this book but they are wrapped around a story with too much emphasis provided to the history, where in reality, there is not any story. If the author had stuck to the facts and omitted the pseudo-poetry, the book would have been much better. Typically the book was written as if it was proceeding to be considered a magazine article with lots of irrelevant filler. I found the footnotes valuable and wish the author had just trapped to the facts. Typically the book in lots of ways felt contrived.
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