Mapping Fate: A Memoir of Family, Risk, and Genetic Research

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University of California Press, 1995 - Biography & Autobiography - 321 pages
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In Mapping Fate, Alice Wexler tells the story of a family at risk for a hereditary, incurable, fatal disorder: Huntington's disease, once called Huntington's chorea. That her mother died of the disease, that her own chance of inheriting it was fifty-fifty, that her sister and father directed much of the extraordinary biomedical research to find the gene and a cure, make Wexler's story both astonishingly intimate and scientifically compelling.
Alice Wexler's graceful and eloquent account goes beyond the specifics of Huntington's disease to explore the dynamics of family secrets, of living at risk, and the drama and limits of biomedical research. Mapping Fate will be a touchstone for anyone with questions about genetic illness and the possibilites and perils of genetic testing. In Mapping Fate, Alice Wexler tells the story of a family at risk for a hereditary, incurable, fatal disorder: Huntington's disease, once called Huntington's chorea. That her mother died of the disease, that her own chance of inheriting it was fifty-fifty, that her sister and father directed much of the extraordinary biomedical research to find the gene and a cure, make Wexler's story both astonishingly intimate and scientifically compelling.
Alice Wexler's graceful and eloquent account goes beyond the specifics of Huntington's disease to explore the dynamics of family secrets, of living at risk, and the drama and limits of biomedical research. Mapping Fate will be a touchstone for anyone with questions about genetic illness and the possibilites and perils of genetic testing.
 

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Contents

The Body in Question
1
After Woods Hole
5
Silent Subjects
22
Dreaming Chorea
66
Chorea Stories
83
Nedda and Hope
85
Tainted by Smog and Hollywood
103
The Test for HDness
125
Leaping Gazellelike Through the Genome
165
Tristes Tropiques
182
G8
210
Testing Fate
223
Genetic Destinations
241
Repeat Sequences
258
Notes
277
A Note on Sources
298

A Double Death
152
Maps for Misreading
163

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About the author (1995)

Alice Wexler is affiliated with the Center for the Study of Women at University of California, Los Angeles. She is the author of Emma Goldman in America (1984) and Emma Goldman in Exile (1989).

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