A clarion call to save humanity’s most essential fellow creatures – and our health Far beneath our skin exists an unfathomable, ancient universe – an internal ecosystem that is critical to our health. Dr Martin Blaser invites us into the wilds of the human ‘microbiome’, unfurling its inner workings and evolution. For thousands of years, bacteria and human cells have co-existed in a relationship that has ensured the health and equilibrium of our body. But now, much like the natural world outside of us, our internal environment is being irrevocably destroyed. The culprit: some of our most revered medical advances – antibiotics – which appear to be linked to the epidemics of asthma, eczema, obesity, certain forms of cancer, and other diseases plaguing modern society. In a book that stands as the Silent Spring of its day, Blaser sounds a provocative alarm that we ignore at our peril.
Author: Martin J. Blaser, MD
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
Release Date: 2014-04-08
A critically important and startling look at the harmful effects of overusing antibiotics, from the field's leading expert Tracing one scientist's journey toward understanding the crucial importance of the microbiome, this revolutionary book will take readers to the forefront of trail-blazing research while revealing the damage that overuse of antibiotics is doing to our health: contributing to the rise of obesity, asthma, diabetes, and certain forms of cancer. In Missing Microbes, Dr. Martin Blaser invites us into the wilds of the human microbiome where for hundreds of thousands of years bacterial and human cells have existed in a peaceful symbiosis that is responsible for the health and equilibrium of our body. Now, this invisible eden is being irrevocably damaged by some of our most revered medical advances—antibiotics—threatening the extinction of our irreplaceable microbes with terrible health consequences. Taking us into both the lab and deep into the fields where these troubling effects can be witnessed firsthand, Blaser not only provides cutting edge evidence for the adverse effects of antibiotics, he tells us what we can do to avoid even more catastrophic health problems in the future.
Author: Margaret Rodriguez
Publisher: Cengage Learning
Release Date: 2015-12-15
The microscopic world comes alive with MICROBIOLOGY FOR SURGICAL TECHNOLOGISTS, 2nd Edition! In addition to understanding and preventing disease transmission in perioperative settings, this book explores viruses, bacteria, parasites, and other common infections and their sources, as well as their connections to the human body’s systems. Safety is a must-know topic for discussion, including aseptic and sterile techniques that protect you and your patients from harmful microorganisms in the operating room. Skills-based and career focused, MICROBIOLOGY FOR SURGICAL TECHNOLOGISTS, 2nd Edition organizes content logically according to microbial characteristics, while highlighting the relationships between microbiology departments, pathology departments, and surgical technologist responsibilities in the workplace. Plus, special features such as case studies, amusing anecdotes, and contemporary media discussions make learning fun, adding interest to every chapter while helping you prepare for a rewarding career. Important Notice: Media content referenced within the product description or the product text may not be available in the ebook version.
Every human body carries a secret cargo: a huge population of microorganisms living in the mouth, on the skin, in the gut. They help digest our food. They make essential vitamins. They break down toxins and metabolise drugs. They exert an invisible influence on our hormones, our immune systems, perhaps even our brains. This is the human microbiome – a living, shifting system of previously unimagined importance and complexity. In this first book-length account of this new realm of human biology, award-winning science writer Jon Turney explores the microbiome in detail, charting its birth and development, investigating how it works, and assessing its many implications for our health, including its potential to shed new light on conditions such as bowel diseases, cancer, allergies and asthma. He considers the potential impacts of our modern disinfectant and antibiotic obsessions, and ponders a future of designer microbiomes and mood-altering probiotics. This book will make you think again about your relationship with your body, your habits – even your sense of who and what you are – as it reveals what it means to be a 21st century superorganism.
Author: Daniel M. Davis
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Release Date: 2018-10-05
The immune system holds the key to human health. In The Beautiful Cure, leading immunologist Daniel M. Davis describes how the scientific quest to understand how the immune system works—and how it is affected by stress, sleep, age, and our state of mind—is now unlocking a revolutionary new approach to medicine and well-being. The body’s ability to fight disease and heal itself is one of the great mysteries and marvels of nature. But in recent years, painstaking research has resulted in major advances in our grasp of this breathtakingly beautiful inner world: a vast and intricate network of specialist cells, regulatory proteins, and dedicated genes that are continually protecting our bodies. Far more powerful than any medicine ever invented, the immune system plays a crucial role in our daily lives. We have found ways to harness these natural defenses to create breakthrough drugs and so-called immunotherapies that help us fight cancer, diabetes, arthritis, and many age-related diseases, and we are starting to understand whether activities such as mindfulness might play a role in enhancing our physical resilience. Written by a researcher at the forefront of this adventure, The Beautiful Cure tells a dramatic story of scientific detective work and discovery, of puzzles solved and mysteries that linger, of lives sacrificed and saved. With expertise and eloquence, Davis introduces us to this revelatory new understanding of the human body and what it takes to be healthy.
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.
Author: Moises Velasquez-Manoff
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: 2012-09-04
A brilliant, cutting-edge exploration of the dramatic rise of allergic and autoimmune diseases and the controversial, potentially groundbreaking therapies that scientists are developing to correct these disorders Whether it is asthma, food or pollen allergies, type-1 diabetes, lupus, multiple sclerosis, or Crohn’s disease, everyone knows someone who suffers from an allergic or autoimmune disorder. And if it appears that the prevalence of these maladies has increased recently, that’s because it has—to levels never before seen in human history. These days no fewer than one in five—and likely more—Americans suffers from one of these ailments. We seem newly, and bafflingly, vulnerable to immune system malfunction. Why? Science writer Moises Velasquez-Manoff explains the latest thinking about this problem and explores the remarkable new treatments in the works. In the past 150 years, improved sanitation, water treatment, and the advent of vaccines and antibiotics have saved countless lives, nearly eradicating diseases that had plagued humanity for millennia. But now, a growing body of evidence suggests that the very steps we took to combat infections also eliminated organisms that kept our bodies in balance. The idea that we have systematically cleaned ourselves to illness challenges deeply entrenched notions about the value of societal hygiene and the harmful nature of microbes. Yet scientists investigating the rampant immune dysfunction in the developed world have inevitably arrived at this conclusion. To address this global “epidemic of absence,” they must restore the human ecosystem. This groundbreaking book explores the promising but controversial “worm therapy”—deliberate infection with parasitic worms—in development to treat autoimmune disease. It explains why farmers’ children so rarely get hay fever, why allergy is less prevalent in former Eastern Bloc countries, and how one cancer-causing bacterium may be good for us. It probes the link between autism and a dysfunctional immune system. It investigates the newly apparent fetal origins of allergic disease—that a mother’s inflammatory response imprints on her unborn child, tipping the scales toward allergy. In the future, preventive treatment—something as simple as a probiotic—will necessarily begin before birth. An Epidemic of Absence asks what will happen in developing countries, which, as they become more affluent, have already seen an uptick in allergic disease: Will India end up more allergic than Europe? Velasquez-Manoff also details a controversial underground movement that has coalesced around the treatment of immune-mediated disorders with parasites. Against much of his better judgment, he joins these do-it-yourselfers and reports his surprising results. An Epidemic of Absence considers the critical immune stimuli we inadvertently lost as we modernized, and the modern ills we may be able to correct by restoring them. At stake is nothing less than our health, and that of our loved ones. Researchers, meanwhile, have the good fortune of living through a paradigm shift, one of those occasional moments in the progress of science when a radically new way of thinking emerges, shakes things up, and suggests new avenues of treatment. You’ll discover that you’re not you at all, but a bustling collection of organisms, an ecosystem whose preservation and integrity require the utmost attention and care.
Author: Karl S. Drlica
Publisher: FT Press
Release Date: 2010-11-24
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.
Author: Dorothy H. Crawford
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2018-02-08
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.
Author: Rob Knight
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: 2015-04-07
Genre: 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.
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.
Author: Scott C. Anderson
Publisher: National Geographic Books
Release Date: 2017
Genre: Health & Fitness
"This cutting-edge book reveals how a healthy gut can drive psychological well-being, improve your mood, and combat common diseases including depression, anxiety, obesity, heart disease--even autism and Alzheimer's--all by nurturing your microbiome. Welcome to psychobiotics, the revolutionary new scientific field that treats the common ailments of our time. Leading medical researchers John F. Cryan and Ted Dinan, together with veteran journalist Scott C. Anderson, explain the operations of the all-critical gut-brain axis, revealing how overall well-being depends on a healthy population of intestinal bacteria. For the first time, Cryan and Dinan--who coined the term "psychobiotics"--introduce the microbes essential to brain health and explain how changes in lifestyle and diet can keep them thriving. With useful charts naming bacteria species and laboratory-tested psychobiotic products, along with disease-by-disease accounts of the role a healthy gut plays in prevention and treatment, this comprehensive guide illuminates the essential steps you need to improve your life--all by maintaining a healthy gut"--
"Eyeopening... Fascinating... may presage a paradigm shift in medicine.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review) "Teeming with information and big ideas... Outstanding.” —Booklist (starred review) The origin of asthma, autism, Alzheimer's, allergies, cancer, heart disease, obesity, and even some kinds of depression is now clear. Award-winning researcher on the microbiome, professor Rodney Dietert presents a new paradigm in human biology that has emerged in the midst of the ongoing global epidemic of noncommunicable diseases. The Human Superorganism makes a sweeping, paradigm-shifting argument. It demolishes two fundamental beliefs that have blinkered all medical thinking until very recently: 1) Humans are better off as pure organisms free of foreign microbes; and 2) the human genome is the key to future medical advances. The microorganisms that we have sought to eliminate have been there for centuries supporting our ancestors. They comprise as much as 90 percent of the cells in and on our bodies—a staggering percentage! More than a thousand species of them live inside us, on our skin, and on our very eyelashes. Yet we have now significantly reduced their power and in doing so have sparked an epidemic of noncommunicable diseases—which now account for 63 percent of all human deaths. Ultimately, this book is not just about microbes; it is about a different way to view humans. The story that Dietert tells of where the new biology comes from, how it works, and the ways in which it affects your life is fascinating, authoritative, and revolutionary. Dietert identifies foods that best serve you, the superorganism; not new fad foods but ancient foods that have made sense for millennia. He explains protective measures against unsafe chemicals and drugs. He offers an empowering self-care guide and the blueprint for a revolution in public health. We are not what we have been taught. Each of us is a superorganism. The best path to a healthy life is through recognizing that profound truth. From the Hardcover edition.
'The Diet Myth is fascinating, and now I'm obsessed with microbes!' Nigella Lawson Why do most diets fail? Why does one person eat a certain meal and gain weight, while another eating the same meal loses pounds? Why, despite all the advice about what to eat, are we all still getting fatter? The answers are much more surprising - and fascinating - than we've been led to believe. The key to health and weight loss lies not in the latest fad diet, nor even in the simple mantra of 'eat less, exercise more', but in the microbes already inside us. Drawing on the latest science and his own pioneering research, Professor Tim Spector demystifies the common misconceptions about fat, calories, vitamins and nutrients. Only by understanding what makes our own personal microbes tick can we overcome the confusion of modern nutrition, and achieve a healthy gut and a healthy body.
Author: Tim Spector
Publisher: The Overlook Press
Release Date: 2014-07-30
If you share most of the same genetic material, what makes you so different from your siblings? How much are the things you choose to do everyday determined by your genes and how much is your own free will? Drawing on his own cutting-edge research of identical twins, leading geneticist Tim Spector shows us how the same upbringing, the same environment, and even the same exact genes can lead to very different outcomes. Challenging, entertaining, and enlightening, Identically Different helps us understand what makes each of us unique and so quintessentially human.