How the Overuse of Antibiotics Is Fueling Our Modern Plagues
Author: Martin J. Blaser
Category: Health & Fitness
This groundbreaking book takes us to the front lines of cutting-edge research where they will discover the adverse effects of antibiotics on our bodies and the possible extinction of our irreplaceable microbes due to our most revered medical advances. 60,000 first printing.
How Your Body's Microbes Hold the Key to Health and Happiness
Author: Alanna Collen
You are just 10% human. For every one of the cells that make up the vessel that you call your body, there are nine impostor cells hitching a ride. You are not just flesh and blood, muscle and bone, brain and skin, but also bacteria and fungi. Over your lifetime, you will carry the equivalent weight of five African elephants in microbes. You are not an individual but a colony. Until recently, we had thought our microbes hardly mattered, but science is revealing a different story, one in which microbes run our bodies and becoming a healthy human is impossible without them. In this riveting, shocking, and beautifully written book, biologist Alanna Collen draws on the latest scientific research to show how our personal colony of microbes influences our weight, our immune system, our mental health, and even our choice of partner. She argues that so many of our modern diseases—obesity, autism, mental illness, digestive disorders, allergies, autoimmunity afflictions, and even cancer—have their root in our failure to cherish our most fundamental and enduring relationship: that with our personal colony of microbes. Many of the questions about modern diseases left unanswered by the Human Genome Project are illuminated by this new science. And the good news is that unlike our human cells, we can change our microbes for the better. Collen's book is a revelatory and indispensable guide. It is science writing at its most relevant: life—and your body—will never seem the same again.
Understanding and Responding to an Emerging Crisis, Portable Documents
Author: Karl S. Drlica,David S. Perlin
Publisher: FT Press
Authored by two leading investigators, this book presents a thorough and authoritative overview of this multifaceted field of science. Pathogenic bacteria have been evolving and spreading resistance to diverse classes of antibiotics. As a result, we risk losing our ability to control and treat infectious diseases. Understanding antibiotic resistance, therefore, is becoming increasingly essential for a broad audience of healthcare professionals, biomedical and public health researchers, students, and policymakers. The authors answer questions such as: What is resistance? How does it emerge? How do common human activities contribute to resistance? What can we do about it? How can we strengthen our “first lines of defense” against resistance? Are there better ways to discover new antibiotics? What unique issues are associated with MRSA and viral influenza? In addition to defining and evaluating one of the most important emerging threats to public health, the authors explain what can be done to minimize risks to public health, and to preserve and extend the effectiveness of existing and new antibiotics.
How Microbes Shape Animal Biology
Author: Angela E. Douglas
Publisher: Princeton University Press
An essential introduction to microbiome science, a new cutting-edge discipline that is transforming the life sciences This book provides an accessible and authoritative guide to the fundamental principles of microbiome science, an exciting and fast-emerging new discipline that is reshaping many aspects of the life sciences. Resident microbes in healthy animals--including humans—can dictate many traits of the animal host. This animal microbiome is a second immune system conferring protection against pathogens; it can structure host metabolism in animals as diverse as reef corals and hibernating mammals; and it may influence animal behavior, from social recognition to emotional states. These microbial partners can also drive ecologically important traits, from thermal tolerance to diet, and have contributed to animal diversification over long evolutionary timescales. Drawing on concepts and data across a broad range of disciplines and systems, Angela Douglas provides a conceptual framework for understanding these animal-microbe interactions while shedding critical light on the scientific challenges that lie ahead. Douglas explains why microbiome science demands creative and interdisciplinary thinking—the capacity to combine microbiology with animal physiology, ecological theory with immunology, and evolutionary perspectives with metabolic science. An essential introduction to a cutting-edge field that is revolutionizing the life sciences, this book explains why microbiome science presents a more complete picture of the biology of humans and other animals, and how it can deliver novel therapies for many medical conditions and new strategies for pest control.
How Microbes Shaped our History
Author: Dorothy H. Crawford
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Ever since we started huddling together in communities, the story of human history has been inextricably entwined with the story of microbes. They have evolved and spread amongst us, shaping our culture through infection, disease, and pandemic. At the same time, our changing human culture has itself influenced the evolutionary path of microbes. Dorothy H. Crawford here shows that one cannot be truly understood without the other. Beginning with a dramatic account of the SARS pandemic at the start of the 21st century, she takes us back in time to follow the interlinked history of microbes and man, taking an up-to-date look at ancient plagues and epidemics, and identifying key changes in the way humans have lived - such as our move from hunter-gatherer to farmer to city-dweller — which made us vulnerable to microbe attack. Showing how we live our lives today — with increasing crowding and air travel — puts us once again at risk, Crawford asks whether we might ever conquer microbes completely, or whether we need to take a more microbe-centric view of the world. Among the possible answers, one thing becomes clear: that for generations to come, our deadly companions will continue to shape human history. Oxford Landmark Science books are 'must-read' classics of modern science writing which have crystallized big ideas, and shaped the way we think.
How Bacterial Resistance is Undermining the Antibiotic Miracle
Author: Abigail A. Salyers,Dixie D. Whitt
Publisher: ASM Press
"What is antibiotic resistance, and why should I be concerned with it?" Media coverage and political and scientific discussions about "superbugs" that defy our current treatments, genetically–modified foods in our fields and grocery stores, the threat of bioterrorism, and the use of antibiotics in agriculture have increased citizen awareness and fears regarding the issues surrounding antibiotic resistance. Revenge of the Microbes: How Bacterial Resistance Is Undermining the Antibiotic Miracle is a single source of answers to this and other questions average people are asking. Written by experts with extensive experience in the field, Revenge of the Microbes provides the scientific information readers will need to form opinions and make informed decisions regarding the use of antibiotics. The authors have carefully sifted through a vast amount of information to ensure comprehensive coverage of topics including the larger issues of economics, politics, health, safety, and the environment. Specific antibiotics and controversies are examined in a real–life context; accounts of positions on all sides of the public policy debate are presented; and less common issues such as what happens to antibiotics once they are released into the environment, are addressed. The evolution of antibiotic–resistant bacteria is put into perspective and bacterial mutation and horizontal gene transfer are explained in simple terms. An in–depth documentation of antibiotic structures is provided in the appendix. Reader–friendly and comprehensible, Revenge of the Microbes will engage a diverse audience, including biologists, doctors, teachers, students, lawyers, environmentalists, and everyday citizens. This new volume encourages readers to consider the extensive role of antibiotics in modern medicine and the potentially catastrophic impact the loss of effective antibiotics would have today and on future generations.
The Advantage of Germs for Your Child's Developing Immune System
Author: Jack Gilbert,Rob Knight
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Category: Health & Fitness
From two of the world’s top scientists and one of the world’s top science writers (all parents), Dirt Is Good is a q&a-based guide to everything you need to know about kids & germs. “Is it OK for my child to eat dirt?” That’s just one of the many questions authors Jack Gilbert and Rob Knight are bombarded with every week from parents all over the world. They've heard everything from “My two-year-old gets constant ear infections. Should I give her antibiotics? Or probiotics?” to “I heard that my son’s asthma was caused by a lack of microbial exposure. Is this true, and if so what can I do about it now?” Google these questions, and you’ll be overwhelmed with answers. The internet is rife with speculation and misinformation about the risks and benefits of what most parents think of as simply germs, but which scientists now call the microbiome: the combined activity of all the tiny organisms inside our bodies and the surrounding environment that have an enormous impact on our health and well-being. Who better to turn to for answers than Drs. Gilbert and Knight, two of the top scientists leading the investigation into the microbiome—an investigation that is producing fascinating discoveries and bringing answers to parents who want to do the best for their young children. Dirt Is Good is a comprehensive, authoritative, accessible guide you've been searching for.
The Enormous Impact of Tiny Microbes
Author: Rob Knight
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Category: Health & Fitness
Allergies, asthma, obesity, acne: these are just a few of the conditions that may be caused—and someday cured—by the microscopic life inside us. The key is to understand how this groundbreaking science influences your health, mood, and more. In just the last few years, scientists have shown how the microscopic life within our bodies— particularly within our intestines—has an astonishing impact on our lives. Your health, mood, sleep patterns, eating preferences—even your likelihood of getting bitten by mosquitoes—can be traced in part to the tiny creatures that live on and inside of us. In Follow Your Gut, pioneering scientist Rob Knight pairs with award-winning science journalist Brendan Buhler to explain—with good humor and easy-to-grasp examples—why these new findings matter to everyone. They lead a detailed tour of the previously unseen world inside our bodies, calling out the diseases and conditions believed to be most directly impacted by them. With a practical eye toward deeper knowledge and better decisions, they also explore the known effects of antibiotics, probiotics, diet choice and even birth method on our children’s lifelong health. Ultimately, this pioneering book explains how to learn about your own microbiome and take steps toward understanding and improving your health, using the latest research as a guide.
Reform, Resistance, and the Pursuit of a Rational Therapeutics
Author: Scott H. Podolsky
Publisher: JHU Press
In The Antibiotic Era, physician-historian Scott H. Podolsky narrates the far-reaching history of antibiotics, focusing particularly on reform efforts that attempted to fundamentally change how antibiotics are developed and prescribed. This sweeping chronicle reveals the struggles faced by crusading reformers from the 1940s onward as they advocated for a rational therapeutics at the crowded intersection of bugs and drugs, patients and doctors, industry and medical academia, and government and the media. During the post–World War II "wonder drug" revolution, antibiotics were viewed as a panacea for mastering infectious disease. But from the beginning, critics raised concerns about irrational usage and overprescription. The first generation of antibiotic reformers focused on regulating the drug industry. The reforms they set in motion included the adoption of controlled clinical trials as the ultimate arbiters of therapeutic efficacy, the passage of the Kefauver-Harris amendments mandating proof of drug efficacy via well-controlled studies, and the empowering of the Food and Drug Administration to remove inefficacious drugs from the market. Despite such victories, no entity was empowered to rein in physicians who inappropriately prescribed, or overly prescribed, approved drugs. Now, in an era of emerging bugs and receding drugs, discussions of antibiotic resistance focus on the need to develop novel antibiotics and the need for more appropriate prescription practices in the face of pharmaceutical marketing, pressure from patients, and the structural constraints that impede rational delivery of antibiotics worldwide. Concerns about the enduring utility of antibiotics—indeed, about a post-antibiotic era—are widespread, as evidenced by reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, academia, and popular media alike. Only by understanding the historical forces that have shaped our current situation, Podolsky argues, can we properly understand and frame our choices moving forward.
The Global Threat from Deadly Bacteria and Our Dwindling Arsenal to Fight Them
Author: Brad Spellberg
Publisher: Prometheus Books
Category: Social Science
Foreword by David Gilbert, MD, Past President of the Infectious Diseases Society of AmericaWhen we live in a world where crisis seems to be the norm, it''s hard to distinguish between those issues or events that worry us, those that hurt us and those that kill us. Rapidly developing drug resistance in death-causing microbes is killing us. And it''s getting worse each passing day. Spellberg''s book is a powerful and compelling journey into the antibiotic resistance problem written for doctors, scientists and any lay-person who loves their family and cares about their friends. This book explains the problem, its causes and potential solutions in a personal, compelling and easy to understand manner. It''s a must read for everyone.-Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH, Director, Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy; Former Associate Director of the Department of Homeland Security''s National Center for Food Protection and Defense; Director, Minnesota Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance; Professor, Division of Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health; Adjunct Professor, Medical SchoolUsing a compelling series of clinical anecdotes, Dr. Spellberg demonstrates how the development of resistance in bacteria has steadily eroded the effectiveness of antibiotics, arguably the most important life-saving drugs developed by the pharmaceutical industry in the twentieth century. Unfortunately, as the levels of resistance in bacteria increase, research and development of new drugs to combat these resistant organisms is plummeting. In this clearly written book, Dr. Spellberg provides a cogent explanation for this paradox and delineates a series of logical steps that can be employed to deal with this worldwide public health problem.-Robert C. Moellering, Jr., M.D., Shields Warren-Mallinckrodt Professor of Medical Research, Harvard Medical SchoolAntibiotic-resistant microbes infect more than 2 million Americans and kill over 100,000 each year. They spread rapidly, even in such seemingly harmless places as high school locker rooms, where they infect young athletes. And throughout the world, many more people are dying from these infections. Astoundingly, at the same time that antibiotic resistant infections are skyrocketing in incidence-creating a critical need for new antibiotics-research and development of new antibiotics has ground to a screeching halt!In Rising Plague, Dr. Brad Spellberg-an infectious diseases specialist and member of a national task force charged with attacking antibiotic resistant infections-tells the story of this potentially grave public health crisis. The author shares true and very moving patient stories to emphasize the terrible frustration he and his colleagues have experienced while attempting to treat untreatable infections, not to mention the heart-break and tragedy that many of these patients'' families had to endure.Dr. Spellberg corrects the nearly universal misperception that physician misuse of antibiotics and dirty hospitals are responsible for causing antibiotic-resistant infections. He explains the true causes of antibiotic resistance and of the virtual collapse of antibiotic research and development. Most important, he advocates ways to reverse this dire trend and instead bolster the production of desperately needed new and effective antibiotics.He also warns against complacency induced by the decades-old assumption that some miracle drug will always be available to ensure the continuation of our antibiotic era. If we do nothing, we run the risk of inviting a bleak future when infectious diseases will once again reign supreme. Then many of the medical breakthroughs that we now take for granted-from routine surgery and organ transplants to intensive care and battlefield medicine-might all be threatened.This crucial and timely book is lucidly written in terms that everyone can understand. It issues a call to action, explaining how, through a strong and concerted effort, w
Taking Control of Your Weight, Your Mood, and Your Long-term Health
Author: Justin Sonnenburg,Erica Sonnenburg
The groundbreaking science behind the surprising source of good health Stanford University’s Justin and Erica Sonnenburg are pioneers in the most exciting and potentially transformative field in the entire realm of human health and wellness, the study of the relationship between our bodies and the trillions of organisms representing thousands of species to which our bodies play host, the microbes that we collectively call the microbiota. The microbiota interacts with our bodies in a number of powerful ways; the Sonnenburgs argue that it determines in no small part whether we’re sick or healthy, fit or obese, sunny or moody. The microbiota has always been with us, and in fact has coevolved with humans, entwining its functions with ours so deeply, the Sonnenburgs show us, humans are really composite organisms having both microbial and human parts. But now, they argue, because of changes to diet, antibiotic over-use, and over-sterilization, our gut microbiota is facing a “mass extinction event,” which is causing our bodies to go haywire, and may be behind the mysterious spike in some of our most troubling modern afflictions, from food allergies to autism, cancer to depression. It doesn’t have to be this way. The Good Gut offers a new plan for health that focuses on how to nourish your microbiota, including recipes and a menu plan. In this groundbreaking work, the Sonnenburgs show how we can keep our microbiota off the endangered species list and how we can strengthen the community that inhabits our gut and thereby improve our own health. The answer is unique for each of us, and it changes as you age. In this important and timely investigation, the Sonnenburgs look at safe alternatives to antibiotics; dietary and lifestyle choices to encourage microbial health; the management of the aging microbiota; and the nourishment of your own individual microbiome. Caring for our gut microbes may be the most important health choice we can make. From the Hardcover edition.
Getting to Know the Trillions of Bacteria and Other Microbes In, On, and Around You
Author: Rob DeSalle,Susan L. Perkins
Publisher: Yale University Press
Category: Human body
Revolutionary research is revealing how the trillions of microbes living on and in our bodies can keep us healthy . . . or make us sick
A New Way of Understanding Allergies and Autoimmune Diseases
Author: Moises Velasquez-Manoff
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Category: Biography & Autobiography
A controversial, revisionist approach to autoimmune and allergic disorders considers the perspective that the human immune system has been disabled by twentieth-century hygiene and medical practices.
How the Famous Sell Us Elixirs of Health, Beauty & Happiness
Author: Timothy Caulfield
Publisher: Beacon Press
"An exploration of the effect our celebrity-dominated culture has on our ideas of living the good life Our perceptions of beauty, health, success, and happiness are framed by a popular culture that is increasingly disconnected from reality. This isn't just a hyperbolic assertion. Research tells us that our health decisions and goals are influenced by both celebrity culture and celebrity endorsements, that our children's ambitions are now overwhelmingly governed by the fantasy of fame, and that our ideals of beauty and success are mediated through a celebrity-dominated worldview. The celebrity brand is at once the most desired state of being (modern-day royalty!) and one of the most socially problematic. Health law and policy researcher Timothy Caulfield provides a fun look into the celebrity world, including interesting facts and anecdotes, as well as a boatload of practical and evidence-based advice on everything from diet, skin care, and colon cleanses to detoxing from our celebrity ambitions. Caulfield tries out for American Idol, has a professional makeover, and endures the Gwyneth Paltrow-endorsed cleanse in this thoroughly unique, engaging, and provocative book"--
The Fatal Menace of MRSA
Author: Maryn McKenna
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
LURKING in our homes, hospitals, schools, and farms is a terrifying pathogen that is evolving faster than the medical community can track it or drug developers can create antibiotics to quell it. That pathogen is MRSA—methicillin-resistant Staphyloccocus aureus—and Superbug is the first book to tell the story of its shocking spread and the alarming danger it poses to us all. Doctors long thought that MRSA was confined to hospitals and clinics, infecting almost exclusively those who were either already ill or old. But through remarkable reporting, including hundreds of interviews with the leading researchers and doctors tracking the deadly bacterium, acclaimed science journalist Maryn McKenna reveals the hidden history of MRSA’s relentless advance—how it has overwhelmed hospitals, assaulted families, and infiltrated agriculture and livestock, moving inexorably into the food chain. Taking readers into the medical centers where frustrated physicians must discard drug after drug as they struggle to keep patients alive, she discloses an explosion of cases that demonstrate how MRSA is growing more virulent, while evolving resistance to antibiotics with astonishing speed. It may infect us at any time, no matter how healthy we are; it is carried by a stunning number of our household pets; and it has been detected in food animals from cows to chickens to pigs. With the sensitivity of a novelist, McKenna portrays the emotional and financial devastation endured by MRSA’s victims, vividly describing the many stealthy ways in which the pathogen overtakes the body and the shock and grief of parents whose healthy children were felled by infection in just hours. Through dogged detective work, she discloses the unheard warnings that predicted the current crisis and lays bare the flaws that have allowed MRSA to rage out of control: misplaced government spending, inadequate public health surveillance, misguided agricultural practices, and vast overuse of the few precious drugs we have left. Empowering readers with the knowledge they need for self-defense, Superbug sounds an alarm: MRSA has evolved into a global emergency that touches almost every aspect of modern life. It is, as one deeply concerned researcher tells McKenna, "the biggest thing since AIDS."
Author: Laura Bowater
Publisher: Royal Society of Chemistry
Antibiotics are familiar drugs to us all, so familiar that we may take them for granted. They allow us to survive life-threatening infections, and allow us to protect the animals we farm for food. Many antibiotics have now become ineffective against common diseases, and there are few alternative treatments to replace them. In this topical book, Laura Bowater, Professor of Microbiology Education and Engagement at Norwich Medical School, considers the past, present and uncertain future of antibiotics. This book begins by looking back at how infectious diseases, such as smallpox and The Plague, were able to wreak havoc on populations before the discovery of the first antibiotics. These then revolutionised the medical world. In an engaging and accessible style, Professor Bowater takes the reader through how antibiotics are made, how bacteria are able to mutate and develop resistance and she explains why there is now a lack of new antibiotic drugs coming to market. What will a future of continued antibiotic resistance look like? How can human activities prevent the rise of ‘superbugs'? Professor Bowater highlights the need for universal cooperation in order to tackle this global health challenge, which, if not addressed, could transport us back to the medical dark ages.
A Funny Look at How Everybody but Me Has Their Head Up Their Ass
Author: Bill Maher
Category: Political Science
From bestselling author and host of HBO's Real Time, Bill Maher's new book of political riffs serves up a savagely funny set of rules for preserving sanity in an insane world A follow-up to the New York Times bestselling The New Rules, The New New Rules delivers a series of hilarious, intelligent rants on everything from same-sex marriage to healthcare, from Republican agendas to celebrity meltdowns, with all the razor-sharp insight that has made Bill Maher one of the most influential comedic voices shaping the political debate today. With another presidential campaign on the horizon and a stellar set of real- life characters to have fun with-"New Rule: If Charlie Sheen's home life means he can't have a TV show, then I say Newt Gingrich can't be president"-this enlightening and important book may be the best thing you pretend to read all year.
How We Learn to Eat
Author: Bee Wilson
Publisher: Basic Books
We do not come into the world with an innate sense of taste and nutrition; as omnivores, we have to learn how and what to eat, how sweet is too sweet, and what food will give us the most energy for the coming day. But how does this education happen? What are the origins of taste? In First Bite, the beloved food writer Bee Wilson draws on the latest research from food psychologists, neuroscientists, and nutritionists to reveal that our food habits are shaped by a whole host of factors: family and culture, memory and gender, hunger and love. An exploration of the extraordinary and surprising origins of our tastes and eating habits—from people who can only eat foods of a certain color to an amnesiac who can eat meal after meal without getting full—First Bite also shows us how we can change our palates to lead healthier, happier lives.
A Social History of Chronic Illness in America
Author: Laurie Edwards
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
Citing a high percentage of Americans who live with chronic illness, an urgent call to action draws on scientific research and patient narratives to explore the role of social medial in medical advocacy, arguing that we must change attitudes about the link between health and lifestyle and provide appropriate and compassionate treatments. By the award-winning author of Life Disrupted. 25,000 first printing.
How Microbes Made Earth Habitable
Author: Paul G. Falkowski
A professor at Rutgers University uses insight and humor to discuss the importance of microbes, the tiny, complex nanomachines that support the very existence of all life on earth and cautions against the possible dangers of tinkering with them.