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The PKU Paradox: A Short History of a Genetic Disease
  1. Harvey L Levy
  1. Correspondence to Dr Harvey L. Levy, Boston Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA; harvey.levy{at}

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Paul DB, Brosco JP. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press 2013

At least three shelves of my bookcase are filled with books about phenylketonuria (PKU) or that contain major sections on PKU. There is much information about PKU as a genetic, biochemical and clinical disorder and, of course, about newborn screening for PKU. There are at least two books about the pterin defects and hyperphenylalaninaemia. But none of these books contains the true inside story of PKU and certainly none of them place PKU centrally within the issues of eugenics, reproduction and DNA. That is, none of them before I added The PKU Paradox to the bookcase.

Diane Paul and Jeffrey Brosco take us on a journey of the facts of PKU and the environment in which these facts came into being and how influential PKU has been in …

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.