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Life on the Edge: The Coming of Age of Quantum Biology

Johnjoe McFadden & Jim Al-Khalili
Item #: D72085
Format: Cloth
Pages/Publication Date: 354 / 2014
Publisher: Crown
ISBN: 9780307986818
Currently Unavailable

Life is the most extraordinary phenomenon in the known universe; but how did it come to be? Even in an age of cloning and artificial biology, the fact remains that no one has ever made a living thing out of dead material. Are we still missing a vital ingredient in its creation? Using firsthand experience at the cutting edge of science, Johnjoe McFadden and Jim Al-Khalili reveal that missing ingredient to be quantum mechanics. Drawing on recent groundbreaking experiments around the world, each chapter here seeks out a solution to some of life's puzzles: How do migrating birds know where to go? What enables our nose to smell a rose? And how do our genes copy themselves with such precision?

"[This book] gives the clearest account I've ever read of the possible ways in which the very small events of the quantum world can affect the world of middle-sized living creatures like us. With great vividness and clarity it shows how our world is tinged, even saturated, with the weirdness of the quantum."—Philip Pullman


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