Double Helix Nancy Werlin Summary

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3rd Quarter Outside Reading Project (ORP) My book was Double Helix by Nancy Werlin. The book is mainly about the negative side of biogenetics. The main character, Eli Samuels, acquires a job at Wyatt Transgenics which is a company that focuses on transgenics, such as inserting a human protein gene inside rabbits and milking them to obtain the protein. The protein can then be used to create treatments for arthritis or cancer. Dr. Quincy Wyatt is basically the “Albert Einstein” of science in the book and he personally gives Eli the job. Samuels dad however, dislikes Dr.Wyatt and asks Eli to not accept the job. Eli, who has a rocky relationship with his dad, takes the job anyway. Eli’s mom had a rare disease called Huntington’s Disease that…show more content…
Wyatt is involved with illegal tampering of genetics. He changes the genetics of a human child and they get adopted. He tests them for “the sake of science” and records data. Before she went insane, Eli’s mom wanted to have a child that did not have Huntington’s Disease, the disease that she contained. She went to Dr. Wyatt, and he toyed around with genetics until he found a way. In return for helping Eli’s mom, Dr. Wyatt got to keep the other children. One of them eventually grew up to become a girl named Kayla. Kayla is essentially Eli’s half-sister. She has Huntington’s Disease since Dr. Wyatt did not treat her intentionally. When they were leaving Dr. Wyatts secret underground, Dr. Wyatt himself appears at the elevator. In the book, this is what happens next, “Dr. Wyatt looked back out at us. Then his face split into a delighted smile… From Kayla burst a sound like nothing I had ever hear in this life. It was a wail, a moan, a shriek. It was one word: ‘Why?’ I had a bare instant in which to see the expression of amazement and bewilderment that dawned on Dr. Wyatt’s face. Kayla didn’t wait for a response from him. Without warning, she suddenly flung the rabbit through the air at my direction. Then, in a single blur of motion, she hurled herself forward into the elevator, straight at Dr. Wyatt… I yelled back over my shoulder, ‘Kayla no! Don’t hurt him, it’ll solve nothing. We’ll turn him in, we’ll-’ Dr.Wyatt’s voice, high…show more content…
Fukuyama if he could join her bioethics seminar class at MIT. She says “I got a glimpse of the world we really might create, with our high-flying ideas about the eradication of suffering. A world in which so many people are found lacking. Are considered unfit even to be born. There’s a difference. That is my point Mr. Samuels. There’s a difference between using gene therapy for the treatment of existing medical conditions, and using our growing, but far from perfect, knowledge of genes to declare that we absolutely know who has a right and who hasn’t to live at all.” To me, what this quote is saying is, just because we can doesn’t mean we should. Even if we could see if a baby is not going to be healthy or “perfect” when it is born, do we have the right to deny it life? This is an extremely hard ethical decision to make. The decision should be entirely the parents business and their own choice. This quote will influence on how I do things in the future. I can’t judge anything just because it is not “perfect”. A disabled person did not ask to be disabled. So why should I judge them just because they are different from my “perfect” view of what a person should be like. Everyone is different, and it is that difference that makes us who we are. By reading Double Helix by Nancy Werlin, I have been able to take away three things from the book. I now know the importance of doing the right thing, even if there are obstacles or difficulties
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