Download More Than Genes: What Science Can Tell Us About Toxic by Dan Agin PDF

By Dan Agin

We're all formed through our genetic inheritance and by way of the surroundings we are living in. certainly, the argument approximately which of those forces, nature or nurture, predominates has been raging for many years. yet what approximately our very first environment--the prenatal international the place we exist for 9 months among perception and delivery and the place we're extra weak than at the other element in our lives?
In More Than Genes, Dan Agin marshals new clinical facts to argue that the fetal atmosphere should be simply as the most important as genetic hard-wiring or maybe later surroundings in deciding upon our intelligence and behaviour. rigidity while pregnant, for instance, places ladies at a ways better possibility of bearing young ones susceptible to nervousness issues. dietary deprivation in the course of early fetal improvement may well raise the chance of past due onset schizophrenia. And publicity to an entire host of environmental toxins--methylmercury, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), dioxins, insecticides, ionizing radiation, and such a lot in particular lead--as good as maternal use of alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, or cocaine may have affects starting from light cognitive impairment to ADHD, autism, schizophrenia, and different psychological issues. Agin argues besides that changes in IQ between racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic teams are way more brought on by greater degrees of rigidity and chemical toxicity in internal cities--which seep into the prenatal setting and compromise the future health of the fetus--than to genetic inheritance. the excellent news is that the prenatal setting is malleable, and Agin means that if we will be able to abandon the naive thought of "immaculate gestation," we will be able to start to shield fetal improvement adequately.
Cogently argued, completely researched, and accessibly written, More Than Genes demanding situations many long-held assumptions and represents a massive breakthrough in our realizing of the origins of human intelligence and behavior.


"What relatively impresses me is that Dan Agin has completed the very tough job of reading children's environmental overall healthiness learn for the final reader in a scientifically balanced approach. i like to recommend this ebook to an individual attracted to how the surroundings impacts the future health of children."
--Jonathan Grigg,, MD, Barts and the London institution of drugs and Dentistry

"Using attention-grabbing old and modern examples, Dr. Agin strips away the fallacies of a few of the most well-liked but unsubstantiated notions relating to either the organic and environmental foundations of human habit. while, he offers the reader with an knowing of ways the surroundings interacts with the genome from the very second of notion to steer the developmental techniques considering this most complicated constitution in nature, the human brain."
--Kim N. Dietrich, The college of Cincinnati university of drugs

About the author

Dan Agin is Emeritus affiliate Professor of Molecular Genetics and phone Biology on the college of Chicago. the writer of Junk technological know-how: How Politicians, firms, and different Hucksters Betray Us, he writes a column on technological know-how and politics for The Huffington submit.

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Additional resources for More Than Genes: What Science Can Tell Us About Toxic Chemicals, Development, and the Risk to Our Children

Sample text

THE RICHNESS OF OUR IGNORANCE s 19 this case the pernicious effects of environmental assaults to the unborn. The evidence we have now is thus as much a call for future research as it is, to shift metaphors here, a dead canary in a mineshaft. A few words about the type of evidence I present. For every study involving human subjects or patients, there are ten studies involving animals, and for every study involving animals there exists the question of how applicable its results are to human biology and medicine—especially when animal behavior must be measured.

No human being develops from conception through gestation to birth, then through infancy, childhood, adolescence, and into adulthood, without some influence from these various environments. Throughout the life span, the human brain and nervous system continue to develop, with neural connections made and unmade. This is especially so in childhood, during which the brain and nervous system change dramatically in response to numerous factors, including the effects of experience. 54 S OF SHAPING AND DESTRUCTION In fact, our major gift from biological evolution is a brain whose intimate structure can change through experience, a brain thoroughly adaptable after birth.

So the shuffle begins: new ideas, new experiments, more new ideas. That’s how science works. We move forward, peering into the shadows of our ignorance. For over 30 years now, too many people have been bemused by overly simplistic ideas about the origins of human behavior. It’s time to move beyond them and to take a closer look at the possible origins in our earliest hours and days and months. TWO - Pollution Babies D uring the summer of 2007, Americans learned that they had a big problem with imported toys for children.

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