El nacimiento de la epigenetica

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N EW TWISTS ON DNA • 100 YEARS AFTER THE WRIGHT BROTHERS

DECEMBER 2003
WWW.SCIAM.COM

Science
Has the Answer:

Genetic Results
May Surprise
You

The Day
the Earth Burned
Reasons to
Return to the Moon

COPYRIGHT 2003 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, INC.

$4.95

contents
december 2003

SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN Volume 289 Number 6

features

TECHNOLOGY LEADERS

55

The ScientificAmerican 50
Our second annual salute to the elite of research, industry and politics
whose accomplishments are shaping a better, wiser technological
future for the world.
BIOLOGY

78 Does Race Exist?
BY MICHAEL J. BAMSHAD AND STEVE E. OLSON

From a purely genetic standpoint, no. Nevertheless,
genetic information about individuals’ ancestral origins
can sometimes have medical relevance.PLANETARY SCIENCE

86

The New Moon
BY PAUL D. SPUDIS

Recent lunar missions have shown that there is still
much to learn about Earth’s closest neighbor.
It’s time to go back.
AVIATION

94

The Equivocal Success
of the Wright Brothers
BY DANIEL C. SCHLENOFF

The Wrights used aerial control as the key to building
and flying the first airplane. But trying to refine their
inventionin secret nearly cost them their glory.
GEOSCIENCE

98

The Day the World Burned
BY DAVID A. KRING AND DANIEL D. DURDA

The asteroid impact that killed the dinosaurs also ignited
a firestorm that consumed the world’s forests.
BIOTECHNOLOGY

106

The Unseen Genome: Beyond DNA
BY W. WAYT GIBBS

“Epigenetic” information stored as proteins and chemicals surrounding DNA
can change themeaning of genes in growth, aging and cancer.

www.sciam.com

78 An amalgam

of many races

SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN

COPYRIGHT 2003 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, INC.

7

SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN

Volume 289 Number 6

departments
14 SA Perspectives
Jumping to conclusions about race.

16
16
18
22
26

How to Contact Us
On the Web
Letters
50, 100 & 150 Years Ago
Innovations

34
48Staking Claims

A quest to diagnose disease using breath tests.










Generic medicines made in living factories challenge
the capacity of drug regulation.

52 Insights

30 News Scan


124

Keeping science out of the courtroom.
The German Stonehenge.
A diving probe dares the Marianas Trench.
Breaking the sound barrier without the boom.
Draft beer on high-techtap.
Panama blazes a bioprospecting path.
By the Numbers: Modernization.
The Nobel Prizes for 2003.
Data Points: Hospital care.

Sallie W. Chisholm, M.I.T. 52

Biological oceanographer Sallie W. Chisholm warns
of the global dangers of disrupting phytoplankton,
the cells that populate the seas.

114 Working Knowledge
Piezoelectric skis.

116 Technicalities
A behind-the-scenes lookat a high-tech police lab.

119 Reviews
Power to the People brings a balanced intelligence
to the controversies over the future of energy
and the environment.

125 Annual Index 2003

columns
50 Skeptic

BY MICHAEL SHERMER

How alternative medicine harms patients.

122 Puzzling Adventures

BY DENNIS E. SHASHA

Parallel repetition.

123 Anti Gravity

BY STEVE MIRSKY

Kidlogic and the hairy Houdini.

124 Ask the Experts
What is game theory?
Why do humans get goose bumps?

128 Fuzzy Logic

BY ROZ CHAST

Cover photoillustration and page 7: Nancy Burson;
this page, at left: Kathleen Dooher.
Scientific American (ISSN 0036-8733), published monthly by Scientific American, Inc., 415 Madison Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10017-1111. Copyright © 2003 by ScientificAmerican, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this issue may be reproduced by any mechanical, photographic or electronic process, or in the form of a phonographic recording,
nor may it be stored in a retrieval system, transmitted or otherwise copied for public or private use without written permission of the publisher. Periodicals postage paid at New
York, N.Y., and at additional mailing offices....
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