A Child Against All Odds

A Child Against All Odds

by Professor Lord Robert Winston (Author)

Synopsis

Compared to the famously fecund rabbit, for whom a single act of coitus has a 90 per cent chance of creating a litter of up to 12 rabbits, humans are very infertile animals. Here in the UK, the average chance of conception is about 18 per cent per month. And in 98 per cent of cases, successful conception leads only to the birth of a single infant. It is unsurprising then that huge efforts have been made to increase our fertility. In vitro fertilization, first attempted one hundred years ago, has now become big business. Market forces, combined with the desperation of many couples to fulfill their biological imperative, have pushed doctors and scientists closer to the boundaries of what is desirable or ethical. And as we are increasingly able to access and control the embryo, the opportunities of altering human genetics to eradicate disease, but also to change human characteristics, becomes a real, and to some, frightening possibility. "A Child Against All Odds" is a ground-breaking book for Robert Winston as it falls squarely in his area of expertise. It combines his work at Hammersmith Hospital as one of the country's leading fertility specialists, with a hard-hitting, sometimes humorous, often controversial look at the scientific, social and ethical background of man's struggle to discover and control the secrets of reproduction. Drawing on personal and professional experience, it is the definitive account of modern reproductive technology from a practitioner who has spent his professional life at the forefront of this most fascinating and emotive area of science.

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More Information

Format: Hardcover
Pages: 398
Edition: 1st
Publisher: Bantam Press
Published: 06 Nov 2006

ISBN 10: 0593054946
ISBN 13: 9780593054949
Book Overview: The nation's leading fertility expert takes us on a controversial journey into the modern science that is shaping human reproduction - ties in to a 6-part BBC 1 series.

Author Bio
Robert Winston is one of the country's best-known scientists. As Professor of Fertility Studies at Imperial College, University of London, and Director of NHS Research and Development and Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist at Hammersmith Hospital, he has made advances in fertility medicine and been a leading voice in the debate on genetic engineering. His television series, including Your Life in Their Hands, Making Babies, The Human Body, The Human Mind and The Story of God and have made him a household name across Britain. He became a life peer in 1995.