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Letter from Joshua Lederberg to James V. Neel

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Hay 22, 1962 Dr. Jmes V. Nssl Department of Human Cenetfcs Unrversrty of Michigan Hedrcal School 1133 E. C*therlno Street Ann Arbor, nlchtgan Dear 31~: I ma wry sorry that my remarks about GenetIcs at Hiroshima could have had any flavor of personal crittcfsm uhtch was not fntsnded at all. I fully realize the klnd of dtfflcutty that you remark on In organfttng a genetlc program end I guess I was merely expressfng my d Pi srppointmmt that bettar could not have been done tn the cfreumstsnces. rhaps thts was slnply the result of too ht& an expectation. I do not see how any better could be done with part time and highly dlstractable supervlrlon from the United States. I do feel that It would be extremely Important to 81 Iclt greater interest In the ABCC project among Japanusc who, If properly approached, might be expected to have the greatest interest In devoting themselves to the study of thfs population. And I do feel that this can be accompllihed most succrssfully by stressrng the opportunity for a basic study of populetton genattcs rather than an exclusive con- mntrstion on the radlatfon problem. I do not think you are gotng to be eble to get very far tn your analysts of nondtsjunctfon tn this popu- latron unless you can get a much mre zealous Interest tn the problcs on the part of our Japanese colleagues. My remarks on the congenItal anomalies study, I thought, tnfrrorad your cwn cautions with regard to the slgntffwnce of the lou Incidence. Thank you for giving me tlmreference to your paper in Lancet, March 10, 1962 - 1 had heard obltqwly about it but hadn’t yet located it and the people I talked to fn Hlroshtma bed not yet seen It. I hope I have been able to convey my rmpresston that you did do an Incredtble job under very dtfflcult ctrcuastences, but that the #rultfulness of future work there must depend on securing more effective partlclpatlon of the Japanese geneticists who have so far tended to avoid thfs study. I am very sorry I

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