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Margaret Lock

Margaret Lock is Marjorie Bronfman Professor Emerita in the Department of Social Studies of Medicine and the Department of Anthropology at McGill University. Her research focuses on an anthropology of the body, comparative epistemologies of medical knowledge, and the global impact of emerging biomedical technologies. She is the author and/or co-editor of 16 books and has published over 200 scholarly articles. Her monograph Encounters with Aging: Mythologies of Menopause in Japan and North America won six prizes. Twice Dead: Organ Transplants and the Reinvention of Death and the co-authored An Anthropology of Biomedicine are also award-winning volumes. Her recent prize-winning book is The Alzheimer Conundrum: Entanglements of Dementia and Aging. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and an Officier de L’Ordre national du Québec, Lock was a recipient of the Canada Council for the Arts Molson and Killam Prizes, in addition to a Trudeau Foundation Fellowship. She was awarded the Gold Medal for Research by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and is an Officer of the Order of Canada. 

Local Biologies in the Age of Precision Medicine

The concept of local biologies, created in the 1990s, refers to the manner in which both individual biology and that of populations, are inseparably entangled with socio/cultural and political/economic processes through time and across space, resultant in significant variation.

In this paper illustrative examples will be discussed, including cross-cultural research into the end of menstruation, sickle cell anemia, and microbiome findings. Conclusions will be drawn about the implications of such empirically documented findings for precision medicine


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