The fifth edition of The Gale Encyclopedia of Genetic Disorders is a timely, comprehensive resource for students and other readers interested in the field of medical genetics. The set contains: Advisory board consisting of subject matter experts; 575 entries, approximately 40 new topics and 82 substantially updated; all entries have up-to-date resource sections listing books, periodicals, and websites for more information; most entries also list relevant organizations devoted to the subject. About 300 full-color photos, tables, charts, illustrations, and graphs; Diagrams of all the human chromosomes; Key Terms sidebars in most entries define words and phrases that may be new to the reader; Questions to Ask Your Doctor sections in most entries; An appendix of related organizations; A glossary of terms (compiled from the entry-specific Key Terms lists); and a general index.
The fifth edition also includes two new entries that address the issue of race and its role in the evolution of genetics and medical ethics: "Race and genetics" provides an overview of the subject and discusses the nonbiological, socially constructed nature of race, and it stresses the primary importance of biogeographical location and ancestral inheritance to genetic sources of disease. "HeLa cells" discusses the specific case of Henrietta Lacks, the African American woman who in the 1950s unknowingly donated vitally important biological material to medical science, material that is still in use today.