A Crack in Creation

A Crack in Creation

The New Power to Control Evolution

Summary

'The most important advance of our era. One of the pioneers of the field describes the exciting hunt for the key breakthrough and what it portends for our future' Walter Isaacson

World-famous scientist Jennifer Doudna - winner of the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for creating the revolutionary gene-editing technique CRISPR - explains her discovery, describes its power to reshape the future of all life and warns of its use.


A handful of discoveries have changed the course of human history. This book is about the most recent and potentially the most powerful and dangerous of them all.

It is an invention that allows us to rewrite the genetic code that shapes and controls all living beings. As a result, dreams of genetic manipulation have become a stark reality: the power to cure disease and alleviate suffering, as well as to re-design any species, including humans, for our own ends.

Jennifer Doudna is the co-inventor of this technology - known as CRISPR - and a scientist of worldwide renown. Writing with fellow researcher Samuel Sternberg, here she provides the definitive account of her discovery, explaining how this wondrous invention works and what it is capable of. She also asks us to consider what our new-found power means: how do we enjoy its unprecedented benefits while avoiding its equally unprecedented dangers?
_________________

PRAISE FOR A CRACK IN CREATION:
'The future is in our hands as never before, and this book explains the stakes like no other' George Lucas
'One of the most PIONEERING women in science . . . Exhilarating' Arianna Huffington
'Thrilling' Adam Rutherford

'An instant classic' Siddhartha Mukherjee

Reviews

  • The most important advance of our era. One of the pioneers of the field describes the exciting hunt for the key breakthrough and what it portends for our future
    Walter Isaacson

About the authors

Jennifer Doudna

Jennifer Doudna is Professor of Chemistry and of Molecular and Cell Biology at University of California, Berkeley, and co-inventor of the CRISPR technology, for which she has been awarded many of the most distinguished prizes available, including the 2015 $3 million Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences and the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

That same year she was listed among the 100 most influential people in the world by Time. In 2016 she had the rare honour of being elected a foreign member of the Royal Society. She speaks around the world about CRISPR and its implications for our future.
Learn More

Samuel Sternberg

Samuel Sternberg received his PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, in 2014, and was a member of Jennifer Doudna’s laboratory from 2010 to 2015. He is a biochemist and author of numerous high-profile scientific publications on the CRISPR technology.
Learn More

Sign up to the Penguin Newsletter

For the latest books, recommendations, author interviews and more