A rising star of pop science investigates whether virgin birth might be possible in the In Like a Virgin, biologist and science writer Aarathi Prasad examines. What if you could have children without sex? It might sound like the plot of a dystopian novel, but biologist Aarathi Prasad thinks it’ll soon be. Editorial Reviews. Review. “Think of her as the female equivalent of Brian Cox making science Like a Virgin: How Science Is Redesigning the Rules of Sex – Kindle edition by Aarathi Prasad. Download it once and read it on your Kindle.

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Like a Virgin

Paperbackpages. This book lay unread for several lie as it seemed a bit daunting. The view until that time was that the sperm implanted a fully formed embryo into the womb, the function of which was to provide a safe haven for its growth. Many ideas are explored, and are attempted to be explained. Prasad writes that this would virggin “the great biological and social equaliser” before adding that the question isn’t if it will happen, but when.

As Prasad writes, Liu loke “already managed to grow the lining for a human womb, using a sort of scaffolding over which cells, cultured from a woman’s womb, could multiply She is softly spoken and thoughtful, and our conversation circles around chromosomes, DNA and IVF, before returning repeatedly to the artificial womb, the potential of which seems to llke and shift the more we discuss it. There are fascinating historical accounts of medical intervention in human reproduction right from antiquity to the present.

The true virgin birth in mice described on one page – the field of non-canonical reproduction is simply parsad mature enough to write a book about.

O ver tea at her north London home, Aarathi Prasad is talking calmly, coolly, about reproduction. Her subject is technologies that would take intercourse out of the reproductive equation, advances that could challenge everything we know about family and the relationship between men and women.


It seems like science fiction but it is presented as serious business. In many ways, even though it’s not obviously the intent of the author, it is a demonstration of the extent to which we resist scientific evidence which contrasts with what we would like to believe.

By that time, you are hooked on the book and regardless of how repetitive the author sounds, you finish the damn thing. But it’s not hard to imagine artificial wombs, for instance, being used more broadly. In fact, aaarthi gives the example of males though infertile with an XX structure.

To get the free app, enter mobile phone number. There has been uproar over reproductive technologies before, she notes.

We also learn about how men could ever bear children, which is completely fascinating, there are also case studies of where a womb is transplanted. Much of the book sounds like science fiction, but it makes you think about science and childbirth in a whole new way.

Like a Virgin: How Science Is Redesigning The Rules Of Sex

And I believe this can be achieved, so then you could grow a baby to term. And then there’s this beautiful, perfectly formed child [on the screen] and you’re in tears. In Like a Virgin, biologist Aarathi Prasad looks at inconceivable ideas about conception, from the ‘Jesus Christ’ lizard’s ability to self-reproduce it walks on water, too to the tabloid hunt for a real life virgin mother by geneticists in the s.

This woman llike use her own stem cells and an artificial Y chromosome to produce healthy new eggs and sperm aarathl any age, is capable of reproducing entirely alone by making one of her eggs behave like a pseudo-sperm that can be used to fertilise herself, and has no need to carry the embryo in her own body. Maybe Lady Gaga would, some maverick. The author also ended up repeating herself a lot throughout the book which became annoying at times.

This area of technology would allow a woman to procreate alone too, using two of her own eggs, an idea Prasad laughs off as megalomaniacal when we discuss it initially. Knowledge has taken us way beyond dichotomous thinking. The explanation proposed is that solo parents will ultimately want the sole pun intended source of genetic material.


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JT rated it liked it Oct 15, I learned a lot of things lkie the book which is ultimately what I look for in books such as this; the gleaning of more useless knowledge. We wouldn’t have to worry about when to have children — between this advance and eggs created from stem cells, it would be possible at any age. I confess I would not pass a test on its contents.

Feb 18, Sehar Moughal rated it really liked it. As a happily childless woman I am not particularly interested in the ins and outs of the uterus the reason I wanted to read this was the more science fictional praszd explored but even the biology parts were made interesting by not overly complicated explanations that leave you with a good general idea prasav things going from DNA splitting to the consequences of assisted reproduction, both physic I was gifted this book as part of the GoodReads giveaway.

You may not have heard of them vrigin — but you’ll soon need to know ’em. I think the author does a good job presenting all sides of arguments regarding artificial reproductive technology and the things that could go wrong though she is ultimately hopeful that these technologies will do more good than harm.

See all Product description. I may come back to it next year. The question I expected to be covered, which Dr. Artificial wombs would challenge social attitudes too, perhaps even more profoundly. Combining the DNA of two males or two females—which has already been tried successfully in mice —could even allow same-sex couples to have their own genetic children.

She works at University College London.