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Experimental Man: What One Man's Body Reveals about His Future, Your Health, and Our Toxic World
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Experimental Man: What One Man's Body Reveals about His Future, Your Health, and Our Toxic World

3.05 of 5 stars 3.05  ·  rating details  ·  38 ratings  ·  11 reviews
Bestselling author David Ewing Duncan takes the ultimate high-tech medical exam, investigating the future impact of what's hidden deep inside all of us
David Ewing Duncan takes "guinea pig" journalism to the cutting edge of science, building on award-winning articles he wrote for Wired and National Geographic, in which he was tested for hundreds of chemicals and genes asso
ebook, 384 pages
Published November 17th 2010 by John Wiley & Sons (first published October 13th 2008)
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Mar 07, 2013 Richard rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Richard by: Down to a Science Science Café
This book was good, but it was either written too early — or perhaps it was written with the wrong perspective.

The basic concept: the author put himself through as many of the next generation medical tests as he could, in three primary areas: genetics, toxicology, and neurology. Some of these tests are available to the average patient/consumer under limited circumstances, but the majority are out of reach. This might simply be due to cost, but others are still so experimental the implications of
Sunil Maulik
David Ewing Duncan (caveat, I know him personally), is an excellent science journalist who has written myriad pieces of short- and long-form journalism for The Atlantic, The New York Times and elsewhere. However his skills begin to fade when applied to writing entire books. In some ways, he is a victim of his own prescience, exploring this particular theme (someone who experiments with, and quantifies, every aspect of his natural existence) 3-5 years before the birth of the "Quantified Self" mov ...more
Andrew Long
I'm not sure how David Duncan is a bestselling author; I think he needs a better editor. This sprawling, chatty book contains some interesting scientific tidbits, but is so weighed down by Duncan's pedestrian observations and scientists' hand-wringing cautions that it yawned me.

The conclusions seem to be: we live in a toxic world (no kidding). Most of us don't know much about our genes and their interaction with the environment (ditto). Someday, genetic and medical tests will enable us to make
J. E. Williams
I think this is a great book idea. However, as a doctor who practices personalized medicine, I find that the author fell short on what could have been said about being a proactive patient. For example: there's a lot about gene testing, but genes are not the whole story on health and disease. Certain genes play important roles, true, but master genes and supergenes stretches the science. And, some clinically important gene mutations are minimally covered or left out, like methylenetetrahydrofolat ...more
Ed Erwin
The author takes one or more of most of the new types of genetic / imaging / blood / etc. tests currently on the market, and some not yet available at large. And determines, in a nutshell, that they are mostly just about impossible to make sense of at this time. Confirming what I already expected, and saving me the hassle and expense.

There is lots of text of the sort "my test revealed that I have a value of 375 for X, whereas the average person has 225, which seems to indicate that I have a high
Lucky David got to find out whether his genes predispose him to risk-taking/aversion, and how fast his body processes mercury, and whether he's likely to become addicted to drugs. They tested his body burden of environmental chemicals. He tried to cross-reference the genetics stuff with the environmental stuff... but it's too early in the game. So, a great idea for a book, but ultimately a little bit of a tease. Raises a lot of interesting questions about what the future of healthcare might look ...more
Didn't get a chance to read the whole book. It's just a fact-finding experiment for the author to map out his genes, chromosomes, etc. to detect variations, negatives about his body. Almost going too far ( imho ) in terms of finding one's defects. I, think he mentioned with the battery of tests i.e. - catscans, mri's, bloodwork, doctor visits it would have costed him several hundred of thousand of dollars ( however, most of the costs were free of charge ).
I had a chance to meet this author, who has a certain proclivity toward diagnostic testing like none I've met before. 22 hours in a CT scan? No thanks....
I especially enjoy how he explains complex scientific terms in simple English. If you've ever considered dropping a few hundred dollars to find out your genetic predisposition for disease, read this first!
I initially was exposed to this author in an 2006 October, National Geographic article where he had his body tested for toxins. In this book he goes over that in greater detail, but also discusses gene sequencing and other factors in relation to the state of technology, business and access. A fascinating read.
Interesting premise for book, but it was too scientific to keep my reading interest. I read over 200 pages, but just couldn't make myself finish it.
While the concept was interesting, it was far too scientific for me.
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David Ewing Duncan is the author of seven books including the worldwide bestseller Calendar. He is Chief Correspondent of public radio's Biotech Nation, a commentator on NPR's Morning Edition, and a contributing editor and a columnist for Conde Nast Portfolio. He has been a contributing editor to Wired, Discover and Technology Review, and has written for Harper s, The Atlantic, Fortune, and many o ...more
More about David Ewing Duncan...
The Calendar When I'm 164: The New Science of Radical Life Extension, and What Happens If It Succeeds Hernando de Soto: A Savage Quest in the Americas Masterminds: Genius, DNA, and the Quest to Rewrite Life The Geneticist Who Played Hoops with My DNA: . . . And Other Masterminds from the Frontiers of Biotech

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