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Knudson AG
A personal sixty-year tour of genetics and medicine
Annual Review of Genomics and Human Genetics (2005) 6:1-14.
The past 60 years surely constitute a Golden Age for biomedical science, and for medical genetics in particular. A personal experience began with an encounter with inborn errors of metabolism, selection, and the incidences of hereditary diseases, and peaked with molecular biology, virology, and cytogenetics, finally focusing all three on the problem of cancer. If the past dominates my contribution to this volume it is probably because octogenarians have much more past than future. There is also a strong temptation to contemplate a past that spans a Golden Age in genetics from the discovery by Avery and his colleagues that the genetic material of our cells is DNA, to the revelations of the human genome. Here I wish to tell how I first came upon the subject of genetics, how I became diverted to medicine just as medicine was making its first enduring relationship with genetics, and how this merger has led to a preoccupation with medical genetics and the genetic Gotterdammerung that is cancer.
Publication Date: 2005-01-01.
Last updated on Sunday, July 12, 2020