The Genome War: How Craig Venter Tried to Capture the Code of Life and Save the World

Front Cover
Random House Publishing Group, Dec 18, 2007 - Science - 416 pages
2 Reviews
The long-awaited story of the science, the business, the politics, the intrigue behind the scenes of the most ferocious competition in the history of modern science—the race to map the human genome.
On May 10, 1998, biologist Craig Venter, director of the Institute for Genomic Research, announced that he was forming a private company that within three years would unravel the complete genetic code of human life—seven years before the projected finish of the U.S. government’s Human Genome Project. Venter hoped that by decoding the genome ahead of schedule, he would speed up the pace of biomedical research and save the lives of thousands of people. He also hoped to become very famous and very rich. Calling his company Celera (from the Latin for “speed”), he assembled a small group of scientists in an empty building in Rockville, Maryland, and set to work.
At the same time, the leaders of the government program, under the direction of Francis Collins, head of the National Human Genome Research Institute at the National Institutes of Health, began to mobilize an unexpectedly unified effort to beat Venter to the prize—knowledge that had the potential to revolutionize medicine and society.

The stage was set for one of the most thrilling—and important—dramas in the history of science. The Genome War is the definitive account of that drama—the race for the greatest prize biology has had to offer, told by a writer with exclusive access to Venter’s operation from start to finish. It is also the story of how one man’s ambition created a scientific Camelot where, for a moment, it seemed that the competing interests of pure science and commercial profit might be gloriously reconciled—and the national repercussions that resulted when that dream went awry.


From the Hardcover edition.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - mynameisvinn - LibraryThing

tries to portray it as fast paced and exciting. biology unfortunately is not. very good with the analogies, although light on the technical information. Read full review

The genome war: how Craig Venter tried to capture the code of life and save the world

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Venter's private company, Celera, slugs it out with the publicly funded National Human Genome Research Institute. Read full review

Contents

Prologue
3
You Can DoMouse
13
The Secret of Life
27
Down Bungtown Road
39
Genesis
55
The Code Breaker
68
This Guy Can GetSequencers to Work
77
The QuieterWorld
91
Evil Boy
236
ChessGames
244
How to Assemble a Fly
255
Line 678
272
Dancing in Miami
279
PART THREE
287
Getting to No
289
Things BeingWhat TheyAre
310

AHundred Million Customers
117
The Gene Hunter
123
All Hands
136
Dead on Arrival
152
Wenter Units
166
War
182
The Ides of March
195
He Doesnt Get It
207
The Hand of Man
224
A Garden Party
325
End Game
336
A Beautiful Moment
359
A Note on Sources
375
Notes
377
Acknowledgment
391
Index
393
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (2007)

James Shreeve is the author of The Neandertal Enigma: Solving the Mystery of Modern Human Origin, and coauthor of Lucy’s Child: The Discovery of a Human Ancestor. His articles have appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, Discover, National Geographic, Science, Smithsonian, and other publications. He has been a fellow of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and of the Alicia Patterson Foundation. Shreeve lives in South Orange, New Jersey.


From the Hardcover edition.

Bibliographic information