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The Compatibility Gene (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 29. August 2013

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Who am I? What makes me different from everyone else? Daniel Davis recounts the remarkable science that has answered one version of these questions. He makes immunology as fascinating to popular science readers as cosmology, consciousness, and evolution (Steven Pinker, Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and the author of 'How the Mind Works' and 'The Better Angels of Our Nature')

There aren't many stories of scientific endeavour that have never been told. This is one of them. Ostensibly about a set of genes that we all have and need, this book is really about the men and women who discovered them and worked out what they do. It's about brilliant insights and lucky guesses; the glory of being proved right and the paralysing fear of getting it wrong; the passion for cures and the lust for Nobels. It's a search for the essence of scientific greatness by a scientist who is headed that way himself (Armand Marie Leroi, author of 'Mutants')

Genes help make us what we are, but in the often overstated claims of what DNA can actually say one crucial section of the double helix has largely been ignored. This book fills that gap. The genes behind our system of diversity code for the clues that control tissue transplants, responses to infection and even sexual success. They are complex indeed but the Compatibility Gene cuts through the complexity to reveal the startling truth about perhaps the most important section of the molecule that defines what it means to be human (Steve Jones, author of 'Almost Like A Whale')

Davis weaves a warm biographical thread through his tale of scientific discovery, revealing the drive and passion of those in the vanguard of research ... unusual results, astonishing implications and ethical dilemmas (The Times)

Davis makes the twists and turns all count (Guardian)

Davis ranges energetically through the research. Cultural references and anecdotes abound (Nature)

A fascinating, expertly told story (Michael Brooks New Statesman)

The genes that make you a true individual ... Davis provides a well-written and easy-to-read account of the sometimes complicated biology behind the crucial genes that affect our lives so profoundly (New Scientist)

Wonderful pen-portraits of the many scientists involved in this fast-moving field ... 5 out of 5 stars (Henry Gee BBC Focus magazine)

Dr. Davis's readable and informative book takes the reader into unexpectedly interesting corners of both the immune system and the lives of immunologists. It is packed with an insider's knowledge - not just of the field, but of where its bodies are buried (Nicholas Wade New York Times)

An elegantly written, unexpectedly gripping account of how scientists painstakingly unravelled the way in which a small group of genes ... crucially influence, and unexpectedly interconnect, various aspects of our lives... Lab work has rarely been made to seem more interesting or heroic (Bill Bryson Guardian, Books of the Year 2013)

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Daniel M. Davis is director of research at the University of Manchester's Collaborative Centre for Inflammation Research and a visiting professor at Imperial College, London. He has published over 100 academic papers, including papers in Nature and Science, and Scientific American, and lectures all over the world, including at the Royal Institution. He has previously won the Oxford University Press Science Writing Prize, and has given numerous interviews for national and international media, including the Times, Guardian, Metro, and National Public Radio (USA). A major feature on his research was published in The Times. Experiments filmed in his laboratory were shown in the BBC series 'The History of Medicine' (2008). He also keenly engages in broad scientific affairs, recently publishing a view on UK science funding policies in Nature.

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21 von 22 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Broad and fascinating introduction to immunology 7. Oktober 2013
Von Nigel Kirk - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
The Compatibility Gene is a very wide traverse cross the science of immunology. Early work tackling transplant rejection, the function of antigens, genetic diversity, disease healing - Davis bravely touches on many aspects of immunology but does not hesitate to provide useful explanations as necessary. He is a capable and easy expositor, targeting this book well at a lay audience. Many concepts are technical, with explanations that may take a couple of reads. The acronym laden text takes a little following - not all are as memorable as NK (Natural Killer). But it's not a long book and well worth the perseverance.

Davis broadens the scope of the book even further to expound theories on how compatibility genes may affect choice of partners, the connections between the nervous system and immune system, and how pregnancy is possible. A lot of explanation is at a molecular level but the great strength of Davis's book is his tracking of the lives of the scientists, their motivations, controversies, competition and achievements. His narrative on the life of Peter Medawar alone is worth the price of the book. In considering this review, I don't know how he fitted so much into 186 pages. The Notes section is very extensive and helpful and the Index useful.
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Scientific Enrichment! 12. November 2013
Von Peter K - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This book does what the best science writing does - it paints a picture of the scientific and unscientific world as inherently one. The Compatibility Gene surprisingly enriched my understanding of history and taught me many things I had no idea could actually be questioned in the first place.
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Fascinating 11. November 2013
Von Deer_Hunter - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
THE COMPATIBILITY GENE is an incredibly thoughtful - and yes, at times technical - journey through our immune system, and of the key scientists who showed us the way (the author Daniel Davis humbly included). I have no background in science, and yet I never felt ejected from the narrative. Fascinating, wholly original stuff.
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Triumph of Writing on Immunology 27. November 2013
Von isaac chiu - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Daniel Davis gives a masterful account about the discovery of compatibility genes and their fundamental role to human biology: in the generation of specific immune responses to combat viruses and bacteria, mediation of auto-immune diseases, and successful organ transplantation. Davis further unveils fascinating and cutting edge work today showing that the importance of these genes reaches farther than the immune system: in the wiring of the brain, generation of successful pregnancies, and even mate selection. Thus, Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) genes, the most variable of all human genes, may be key to what makes us humans so successful in biological processes requiring compatibility both internally in the human body and at the interface with the outside world. Davis is an appropriate ambassador for the field, currently conducting important immunological research in his own laboratory. In "The Compatibility Gene", he begins with Peter Medawar's pioneering work on transplantation research and Frank Burnet's theory of self-tolerance, leading to the discovery of MHC and eventual absolutely revealing crystal structure of MHC proteins bound to their peptides. It is very exciting to read in such a clear style the interesting history of immunological research, accounts of personal experiences, struggles and eventual scientific breakthrough and discovery. As one with primary training in immunology, it is very refreshing to see such a well-written account of significant immune discoveries and the people who conducted them. This book is a pure joy to read and brings cutting edge science to the everyday reader.
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Fascinating! 12. November 2013
Von A. Tom - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
A fascinating book that explores the world of the immune system and its impact on our body and our unconscious decisions. Dr. Davis takes us into the world of research immunology in a way only an insider can. His insight and anecdotes are unexpectedly compelling - a definite MUST READ!
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