Identically Different: Why You Can Change Your Genes Hardcover – 21 Jun 2012
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Spector will get you through many dinner parties. But, much more importantly, he will show how a certain kind of scientific fundamentalism collapsed under the burden of its inability to explain the world as it is - complex, flowing, changing - rather than as they would like it to be - simple and clear. Read him. (Bryan Appleyard THE SUNDAY TIMES)
A fascinating and provocative book...Spector is a talented story-teller, weaving real-life accounts of identical twins into each chapter...This is an informative and thought-provoking tour of some of the most exciting areas in biology right now. Spector concludes by inviting us to imagine a future in which we see our genes as malleable, rather than as masters of our biological destiny - just one part of the endlessly complex and fascinating story of what makes each of us unique. (NEW SCIENTIST)
Identically Different is a fresh and though-provoking book on how the environment affects epigenetics. (Dr Nessa Carey BBC FOCUS MAGAZINE)
Spector...pulls off the rare feat of being able to make genetic theory both intriguing and comprehensible to the ordinary reader. (THE LADY)
In Identically Different, Tim Spector, a world-renowned authority on twins, introduces us in an entertaining, eloquent and expert way to the new (yet old) science of epigenetics: the study of how the environment can influence our genes and how those influences can be passed on to future generations. (James Williams TIMES EDUCATIONAL SUPPLEMENT)
A fascinating attempt to see us for what we are and to investigate what life is, and to show why a heady combination of hormones, chemicals, genes and instinct can make us what we are, and what we might be. (GOOD BOOK GUIDE)
This book is a fascinating exploration of our current understanding of what makes us what we are: health, behavior, and personality. (JOURNAL OF TWIN RESEARCH AND HUMAN GENETICS)
Tim Spector's book turns genetics on its head. Lucid, surprising and with a very human face. It brings epigenetics alive. it is a great read! (Michael Mosley)
Spector uses recent research to look again at what goes into developing our identity and our individualism. (Good Book Guide (Bestsellers))
The astonishing new science that is changing everything we thought we knew about genes and identitySee all Product description
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In recent years the pedulum has swung from belief that upbringing had most impact on personality to genetics. Reading the popular press you could be forgiven for thinking that there is a gene for everything from eye colour to athletic ability not to mention homosexuality or criminal tendencies. Someone even tried to use genetics as a defence in a criminal court (unsuccessfully).
Until recently Tim Spector was, in his words, "one of the many scientists who took the gene-centric view of the universe for granted...But I had a nagging doubt that we were missing something." This book explains in a very readable way just what that "something" was.
Years of work with twins, particularly identical twins has provided evidence that things are more complicated that the straightforward choice between nature and nurture. So much so that that debate becomes almost irrelevant.
The book is very easy to read, full of fascinating twin case studies and amusing references to modern popular culture. Although it explains the science well it is nothing like a textbook so suitable for anyone interested in the topic.
There's a lot of thought provoking information here especially about plastics, IVF and probiotic yoghurts. If you were dreading the future of Genetic testing dicating access to everything from insurance to jobs, you can probably relax. We may have half the number of genes than a tomato but we humans are still too complex to be completely predictable. The scientists have a lot more work to do.
An informative and enjoyable read.
It's not as intense or biologically complex as Vanessa Carey's The Epigenetics Revolution, but this book does an amazing job of explaining what epigenetics is all about, and how it affects each and every one of us.
It's a really enjoyable read too, which makes the content seem more approachable and understandable, and Tim Spector does a good job of getting the information over.