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Books by Lee Tang
1. How the Jews Beat Tay-Sachs: Screening for Disease Before Pregnancy
2. Playing God: How Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis Is Rewriting Family History
3. The Other Scarlet “A”: Abortion's Relationship to Genetic Testing
4. Silencing a Gene: The Future of Down Syndrome
5. What Do Parents Want to Know? Grappling with Variants of Uncertain Significance
6. The Right to an Open Future: Navigating the Return of Results
7. How to Hunt a Zebra: Ending the Rare-Disease Diagnostic Odyssey
8. The Genie in the Bottle: Sequencing Newborn Babies
About the Author
Summary &Study Guide
How genetic Technologies AreChanging the Way We Have Kids—and the Kids We Have
Title: Summary & Study Guide - The Gene Machine
Subtitle: How Genetic Technologies Are Changing the Way We Have Kids - and the Kids We Have
Author: Lee Tang
Publisher: LMT Press (lmtprss.wordpress.com)
Copyright © 2017 by Lee Tang
All rights reserved. Aside from brief quotations for media coverage and reviews, no part of this book may be reproduced or distributed in any form without the author’s permission. Thank you for supporting authors and a diverse, creative culture by purchasing this book and complying with copyright laws.
First Edition: August 2017
Issued in print and electronic formats.
ISBN 9780995943179 (ebook)
ISBN-13: 9781974409402 (paperback)
ISBN-10: 1974409406 (paperback)
Limit of Liability/Disclaimer of Warranty: The publisher and author make no representations or warranties regarding the accuracy or completeness of these contents and disclaim all warranties such as warranties of fitness for a particular purpose. The website addresses in the book were correct at the time going to print. However, the publisher and author are not responsible for the content of third-party websites, which are subject to change.
To my wife, Lillian, who is the source of energy and love for everything I do, and to Andrew and Amanda: watching you grow up has been a privilege.
For a complete list of books by Lee Tang and information about the author, visit https://lmtpress.wordpress.com.
The Gene Machine: How Genetic Technologies Are Changing the Way We Have Kids — and the Kids We Have” by Bonnie Rochman.
The book guides us through the new frontier of gene technology and covers many topics from breast cancer to Tay-Sachs, several pre-natal genetic mapping technologies, genome sequencing, rare disease diagnosis, silencing of a gene, and repairing gene defects using gene editing tools (CRISPR). It covers testing for Down syndrome and abortion, and the emotionally and morally fraught decisions individuals are forced to make when confronting the information these tests reveal.
Bonnie Rochman is an award-winning journalist and a former health and parenting columnist for Time magazine. "The Gene Machine" is her first book and was inspired by a cover story she wrote for Time.
Important Note About This Study Guide
This guide is a summary and not a critique or a review of the book. It does not offer judgment or opinion on the content of the book. This summary may not be organized chapter-wise but is an overview of the main ideas, viewpoints, and arguments from the book as a whole. It is NOT meant to be read as a replacement of the book which it summarizes but, instead, a supplement for review of the book's main premises and to provide commentary and additional resources.
Newborn screening is a government-funded program to screen infants shortly after birth for a list of treatable conditions. Most screening is done in the first two days after birth when baby’s enzyme and metabolic levels are measurable. Each year, the program identifies thousands of infants who have genetic disorders with severe, often deadly consequences.
After completing the Human Genome Project in 2003, scientists have identified well over four thousand DNA mutations that can cause genetic disease. DNA sequencing can tell individuals if they're at risk of developing cancers, and it can help tailor specific treatments to match the genetic backgrounds of each patient.
In the past few years, genetic testing has expanded into a full array of testing available prenatally, postnatally, and even pre-conception. More targeted analysis has allowed women to weed out unhealthy embryos before attempting pregnancy. Genome sequencing gives the child’s blueprint, including predisposition to diseases such as Down syndrome, early-onset Alzheimer’s, or breast cancer. The landscape is constantly changing. Tests are replaced so quickly by newer, more comprehensive versions that even professional genetic counselors are finding it hard to keep up.
Having access to so much information can be empowering, enlightening, confusing, and allow them to end the pregnancy. This book is not about right or wrong answers, but to guide you through the new frontier of gene technology, show how the new genetic technology transforms medicine, and introduce you to the dilemmas many parents face in this era.
HOW THE JEWS BEAT TAY-SACHS
Screening for Disease Before Pregnancy
Tay-Sachs is a fatal hereditary neurological disease affecting young children. Ashkenazi Jews who trace their roots to Eastern Europe are more likely to be carriers—4 percent of Ashkenazi Jews in the United States is a carrier, compared to 0.4 percent in the general population.
Tay-Sachs is an autosomal recessive disease caused by a defective gene on chromosome 15. It is called