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Alan Engel, Author Dutton Books $17.95 (269p) ISBN 978-1-55611-114-3
Engel, billed by his publisher as a ``renowned physician,'' has written a medical thriller crammed with often daunting clinical detail. Nobel-hopeful and neurobiologist George Mulligan receives an urgent message to consult with other medical specialists in Paris on a case of progeria, a rare disease that prematurely and rapidly ages the human body. Dr. Mulligan's controversial theory about the genetics of human intelligence may explain his command performance at the autopsy of a Russian child who has died of progeria in France. Mulligan's lifeand that of his French counterpart in the case, Dr. Irene Saillandsuddenly becomes endangered as KGB agents try to cover up the situation. Thrust into an international medical scandal, Mulligan discovers the dead boy is a product of deliberate mutation designed by the Soviets to create a new breed of soldiers. This species of variants is based, ironically, on his own idea that simple enzyme changes in the embryo may have profound results. Though engrossing from a medical point of view, this novel may be of less interest to the casual reader trying to muddle through the medical verbiage. Mulligan's romance with Sailland has its diversionary moments but takes second place to the complex genetic background. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/01/1989
Release date: 02/01/1989
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-515-10643-5
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