Blood Matters: From Inherited Illness to Designer Babies, How the World and I Found Ourselves in the Future of the Gene. Masha Gessen. Review: Blood Matters: A Journey Along the Genetic Frontier by Masha GessenHilary Rose finds hope and caution in a thoughtful survey of. Aged 37, a seemingly healthy Masha Gessen is advised to cut off her breasts and remove her ovaries. Living in the shadow of her mother’s.

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I was so excited that this book was as accessible as it was. Along the way she covers a lot of ground about what we can learn from our genes, the value of screening, whether patients are sophisticated enough to handle this information and the distress and anxiety of uncertainty.

Jul 11, K. In the second part she looks at how genetic testing is being used now in mainstream healthcare and by certain communities. There is a chilling moment when the one adviser who does agree that surveillance can be effective expresses strong doubts mmatters any insurance company would cover treatment.

Bred in the genes

I understand her wanting to make it personal but it somehow took away bloo the rest of the great background she provided. Some may find this last suggestion rather hard to believe; it was not made by a tabloid newspaper, but by an editorial in the leading US journal Science.

There was a problem adding your email address. Unsettling medical memoir by a worried-but-still-well journalist who carries a breast-cancer gene.


Open Preview See a Problem? Sign up here to receive your FREE alerts. Both are required reading, as they are completely different takes on the subject matter.

Sep 17, Cindy rated it really liked it. She raises questions I had never thought of, but will probably have to deal with in my lifetime. This is not a book that you can cuddle up with in bed.

Mar 28, Jen rated it really liked it.

I love a book that challenges me. Maasha help her decide whether and how to act on this knowledge, Gessen researches the history of genetic disease and genetic testing, and visits many scientists, past and present patients, and their families.

She also offers a huge amount of research from a non-academic perspective. I found this book fascinating and well written.

Sep 26, Laura Gilbert rated it liked it. Mar 15, Judy Gehman rated it really liked it. As she wrestled with a wrenching personal decision—what to do with such knowledge—Gessen explored the landscape of this brave new world, speaking with others like her and with experts including medical researchers, historians, and religious thinkers. She has since returned to the United States. Gessen ably balances her reporting with her personal experience, using each to inform the other.

There is much discussion of Ashkenazi Jews and their genetic load of diseases, as well as the genetic problems of other groups. For Gessen this confirms the advice of the clinicians, and she opts for a double mastectomy. Masha Gessen is a journalist of Ashkenazi jewish ancestry with a BRCA gene mutation that meant she watched her mother die of cancer and her statistical probability of getting ovarian or breast cancer was quite high. A journalist with a family history of breast and ovarian cancer must first decide whether to get testing, and then, discovering she is positive, decide what action to take.


Blood Matters by Masha Gessen

The BRCA genes do not simply increase the odds of cancer; they cause it, with more stubborn forms occurring at an earlier age. It is easy to read because it feels like you’re matterrs with a friendc to work through some personal issues, but a lot of the scientific evidenceis right there and researched for you.

Just my opinion of course. A little disjointed though. Please provide an email address.

Review: Blood Matters by Masha Gessen | Books | The Guardian

As she wrestled with a wrenchin. In this section Gessen gets more deeply into the cruel variety of hereditary diseases and how these diseases shape the lives of those who have them. Gessen Ester and Ruzya: The author learns she has a genetic predisposition to breast cancer and ovarian cancer. It is now 20 years since the much-celebrated isolation of the sequences through which Huntington’s is transmitted, but still there is no effective hessen in sight.

Blood Matters and Pretty is What Changes.

She also delves into many other areas related to genetic bliod and medicine including why genes for some diseases tend to be found more frequently in some groups such as the Amish or Ashkenazi Jews.