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The Making of a Fly: The Genetics of Animal Design 1st Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0632030484
ISBN-10: 0632030488
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Understanding how a multicelluar animal develops from a single cell (the fertilized egg) poses one of the greatest challenges in biology today. Development from egg to adult involves the sequential expression of virtually the whole of an organisms genetic instructions both in the mother as she lays down developmental cues in the egg, and in the embryo itself. Most of our present information on the role of genes in development comes from the invertebrate fruit fly, Drosophila. The two authors of this text (amongst the foremost authorities in the world) follow the developmental process from fertilization through the primitive structural development of the body plan of the fly after cleavage into the differentiation of the variety of tissues, organ and body parts that together define the fly. The developmental processes are fully explained throughout the text in the modern language of molecular biology and genetics. This text represents the vital synthesis of the subject that many have been waiting for and it will enable many specific courses in developmental biology and molecular genetics to be focussed upon it appealing to 2nd and 3rd year students in these disciplines as well as in biochemistry, neurobiology and zoology. It will also have widespread appeal amongst researchers.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 228 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell; 1 edition (April 15, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0632030488
  • ISBN-13: 978-0632030484
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.6 x 9.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,439,008 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I was fortunate enough to buy this at the bargain price of $19,087,354 there must have been a sale because the next day it was listed at $23M. I was very pleased to find upon arrival that the book contained very useful information, however to be honest I was expecting a few more pictures for the price paid. I highly recommend this to all my associates, I have many acquaintances with children in only the best private schools who will be buying several copies. If the price has you worried, ask yourself the American question: "can you really put a price on good education?"
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Format: Paperback
What a great book! Lawrence has managed to take the long history and complex details of genetic studies on drosophila development, and synthesize it all into an accessible summary that anyone can understand. This is by far the most concise and straightforward summary of fly development, and should be considered a must-read for anyone who cares about developmental biology. OK, full-time fly people will probably find it mostly too basic, but for the rest of us it's just right. Sidebars on the different techniques provide useful details for those who care without interrupting the flow of the prose. Defiantely recommended. Plus, the cover picture is really cool.
2 Comments 43 of 50 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
The general reader interested in not only how a single fly egg cell develops into a complex, formed fly, but how genetic and molecular biological experiments are used to determine such mechanisms, will find this book useful. The maternal systems that establish positional information in the egg cell, followed by the development of parasegments, and followed by expression of groups of cells, are described. It is shown that a large amount of genetic information is required to simply organize the embryo, besides building it. Many of the genes discussed have homologues in other higher animals such as vertebrates.
1 Comment 27 of 31 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
I purchased this book as an investment property. I see my $1,234,349 investment has now paid off handsomely as the book value has topped $23 million. I can't decide if I should list this for sale or await further gains in value.
1 Comment 40 of 52 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
For the uninitiated such as I, it has been entirely mysterious how a strand of DNA manages to express itself as a finished animal. Indeed, I really do believe evolution works, and that the information that describes an individual animal is passed on through the coding of DNA. But it has been uncomfortable accepting this principle on faith because authorities in the field say so. Here is a book that describes the process and explains how scientists detect and measure the mechanism. To all my fellow skeptics, I highly recommend this book.
Comment 17 of 21 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
I normally have a strict policy of paying no more than $10 million for a book, but after previewing "The Making of a Fly," I decided to remove 1.3 million other books from my wish list and free up the cash. From the first chapter ("When a Mommy Fly and a Daddy Fly Love Each Other Very Much...") to coverage of a fly's development ("Buzzing Around People's Ears: Nature or Nurture?"), Peter Lawrence details the minutiae of fly life most humans would never know. The complimentary fly swatter was an unexpected treat, although I believe the publishers may have upped the price for this reason.
1 Comment 47 of 63 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
This is a wonderful summary of that which we have learned from genetic knock-out and knock-in technology. There is a systemic evaluation of even the earliest cell divisions and the results are clear: knock-out or knock-in a gene, and the patterns change. Even axial organization of the egg can be influenced by knocking out a gene.

The focus is entirely on making sense of the drosophila with knock-out and knock-in experiments . Fundamental research into initiating metabolic activity, surface chemistry and protein assembly is not addressed.
Comment 12 of 15 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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By A Customer on March 25, 2000
Format: Paperback
I read this book when I was doing a project on drosophila menogaster, and this book really helped. There were some things that were hard to understand, but for the most part it was imformative and concise.
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