BREAKTHROUGH

THE RACE TO FIND THE BREAST CANCER GENE

Davies (editor of the journal Nature Genetics) and White (coauthor, Einstein: A Life in Science, 1994) describe one of the most dramatic discoveries to date regarding the influence of genetic factors on health—the most exciting frontier in medical research. The authors relate the discovery and its background in full detail, providing an effective foundation for understanding not only the process of locating the breast cancer gene but, more generally, the nature and treatment of breast cancer. Cancer is the result of an error in the DNA that regulates normal cell division, caused either by an external agency, such as radiation, or by a congenital ``mistake'' in the DNA. The fact that having close female relatives with breast cancer greatly increaseed a woman's odds of getting the disease indicated that a faulty gene might be active in these cases. By the late 1980s, research zeroed in on a gene designated BRAC1, the chromosomal location of which was announced in 1990 by Dr. Mary Claire-King of the School of Public Health at Berkeley. King's discovery—which the authors compare to narrowing down a search for a missing person from all of North America to New York—set off a race among researchers to pinpoint the precise location of BRAC1. King joined forces with Francis Collins, whose laboratory had isolated the genes responsible for cystic fibrosis and Huntington's disease. But in October 1994, a team headed by Mark Skolnick of the University of Utah isolated the gene. While the discovery does not provide a cure for cancer—or even a clue to one—it may allow women to more accurately assess their own risk. Perhaps in the long run, the discovery will lead to genetic therapy for those women who carry the gene. A well-written and exceptionally detailed overview of the search for the breast cancer gene, spotlighting the breakthrough in its full dramatic impact.

Pub Date: Feb. 16, 1996

ISBN: 0-417-12025-1

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Wiley

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 1995

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MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AND THE MARCH ON WASHINGTON

This early reader is an excellent introduction to the March on Washington in 1963 and the important role in the march played by Martin Luther King Jr. Ruffin gives the book a good, dramatic start: “August 28, 1963. It is a hot summer day in Washington, D.C. More than 250,00 people are pouring into the city.” They have come to protest the treatment of African-Americans here in the US. With stirring original artwork mixed with photographs of the events (and the segregationist policies in the South, such as separate drinking fountains and entrances to public buildings), Ruffin writes of how an end to slavery didn’t mark true equality and that these rights had to be fought for—through marches and sit-ins and words, particularly those of Dr. King, and particularly on that fateful day in Washington. Within a year the Civil Rights Act of 1964 had been passed: “It does not change everything. But it is a beginning.” Lots of visual cues will help new readers through the fairly simple text, but it is the power of the story that will keep them turning the pages. (Easy reader. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-448-42421-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2000

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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