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Identically Different: Why We Can Change Our Genes Paperback – 30 Jul 2014

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3 reviews
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Be Skeptical 24 Nov. 2014
By GeneticsProf - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I am a professor working actively in the area of human genetics. I am very sympathetic to the viewpoint that genetic determinism is dead. However, others have pointed this out for the past 100 years, so it is surprising that this author seems to think he somehow discovered this over the past decade. Yes, I agree that the media wildly over-hypes the similarities in identical twins, while discounting the myriad differences, but this has been known by intelligent people for years.

The author dismisses (rightfully so) much of the pseudoscience in the diet industry, but then he very uncritically presents the very controversial data regarding transgenerational inheritance in mammals, including humans, as if this is somehow accepted and not controversial. He cites many underpowered studies that do not readily prove his case, and much of his writing is overly simplistic and further propagates the “gene for” meme. The author then really goes off the rails with wild speculations regarding heritability in terms of homosexuality (“gay genes”) and other sexual traits.

This is not a scholarly book by any means, and if you buy it, please read it with substantial skepticism. There were a few useful points and citations sprinkled among the rest of the speculative and frankly pseudoscientific material in the book, so this is why I gave it a 2 rather than a 1. I had really hoped that this author would write a scholarly and well-referenced, critical book in this area, but this is basically just wild, rampant speculation.
Excellent! Variety of applications, including weight loss. 10 Nov. 2013
By N. Weisman - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Excellent introduction to epigenetics. Why the genes you are born with may not be the ones you live with. One more strike against determinism. Yet more support for free will (down to the DNA) and responsibility. Not absolute freedom - the context is set but malleable. Lamarck redeemed.
Great! 9 Aug. 2014
By David Seckler - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is one of the most informative, exciting and, yes, witty books in science I have ever read! I recommend it highly!
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