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The Fetal Matrix


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Table of Contents

1. Shaping our destiny: genes, environment and their interactions; 2. Mother and fetus; 3. Fetal choices; 4. Predictive adaptive responses and human diseases; 5. Obesity, diabetes and other diseases; 6. The biology of predictive adaptive responses; 7. Predictive adaptive responses - critical processes in evolution; 8. Evolutionary echoes and the human camel; 9. Improving human health; 10. Fetal futures.

Promotional Information

A ground-breaking and fascinating account of fetal origins of adult disease.

About the Author

In 2004, Dr Peter Gluckman was named 'New Zealander of the Year' by the New Zealand Herald. The newspaper recognized him for 'a long career of achievement that has brought life-saving developments in medicine and demonstrated an ability to produce world-leading scientific research in New Zealand.


'Gluckman and Hanson argue that the interaction between mammals and their environment while in the womb irreversibly affects their future development, what they call a 'predictive adaptive response'. It also has huge health implications for the rest of their lives. The authors are persuasive, and their findings have relevance for health policy everywhere. If maternal well-being affects the lifelong health of the offspring, it makes good sense to ensure that mothers are always well cared for.' New Scientist 'In an ideal world The Fetal Matrix would be taken more seriously than any other book on health and nutrition purlished in the past year.' FT Magazine 'Those seeking an alternative to the current preventive approaches focused on healthy choices by adults should certainly read Gluckman and Hanson's book. The book itself provides a clear description of the origin and development of a provocative and truly original idea.' Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine 'The Fetal Matrix by Peter Gluckman and Mark Hanson is a fascinating and important book about the responses of the mammalian fetus to its environment ... a thought-provoking account of a topic in which developmental biology, physiology and clinical medicine intersect.' Nature 'The biological interpretation of disease and health is a topic in need of serious attention and wider dissemination. In The Fetal Matrix, Gluckman and Hanson have made a very interesting contribution to this enterprise. ... they have introduced, in a very readable fashion, an idea that is likely to receive further attention.' Biologist

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