Bestselling Author Sam Kean To Discuss The Violinist’s Thumb At The Wistar Institute Authors Series

Bestselling Author Sam Kean To Discuss The Violinist’s Thumb At The Wistar Institute Authors Series

September 6, 2012

(PHILADELPHIA—September 6, 2012)  Can genetics explain a cat lady’s love for felines? Or how DNA led to people with no fingerprints, or humans born with tails? Unraveling the genetic code hasn’t been easy—from its earliest days the field of genetics has been rife with infighting and controversial theories—but scientists can now finally read the astounding stories inscribed in our DNA.

In his latest book, The Violinist’s Thumb: And Other Lost Tales of Love, War, and Genius, as Written by Our Genetic Code, bestselling author Sam Kean  untangles the secrets of our genetic code, explaining how genetics has shaped our past, and how DNA will determine humankind’s future.

Kean will sit down for a special interview about The Violinist’s Thumb with Host and Producer of WHYY's Radio Times, Marty Moss-Coane, on Tuesday, September 11, at 7 p.m. at WHYY in Philadelphia. The lecture is presented as part of The Wistar Institute Authors Series, which semiannually features books about science and medicine.

Sam Kean is a writer in Washington, D.C. He is the author of the New York Times national bestseller The Disappearing Spoon, which was also a runner-up for the Royal Society’s book of the year for 2011. His work has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Mental Floss, Slate, and New Scientist, and has been featured on NPR’s Radiolab and All Things Considered.

The Joseph Fox Bookshop, an independent bookstore located at 1724 Sansom St., will be providing books for sale at the event. The Violinist’s Thumb was published by Little, Brown and Company on July 17, 2012.

All Authors Series events are free; however, registration and printed tickets are required to attend the event. Register for this event at

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  September 6, 2012

Contact: Alayna Avery, 215-898-3790

The Wistar Institute is an international leader in biomedical research with special expertise in cancer research and vaccine development. Founded in 1892 as the first independent nonprofit biomedical research institute in the country, Wistar has long held the prestigious Cancer Center designation from the National Cancer Institute. The Institute works actively to ensure that research advances move from the laboratory to the clinic as quickly as possible. The Wistar Institute: Today’s Discoveries – Tomorrow’s Cures. On the web at