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Viruses Vs. Superbugs: A Solution to the Antibiotics Crisis?
     

Viruses Vs. Superbugs: A Solution to the Antibiotics Crisis?

by T. Hausler, Thomas Hanusler
 
Each year thousands of people die from bacteria resistant to antibiotics. Alternative drugs are urgently needed. A surprising ray of hope from the past are viruses that kill bacteria, but not us. Award-winning science journalist Thomas Häusler investigates how these long-forgotten cures may help sick people today.

Overview

Each year thousands of people die from bacteria resistant to antibiotics. Alternative drugs are urgently needed. A surprising ray of hope from the past are viruses that kill bacteria, but not us. Award-winning science journalist Thomas Häusler investigates how these long-forgotten cures may help sick people today.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

'An exceptionally thorough book, extraordinarily well written and scientifically authoritative, a book about an explosive subject, that could not have been done better.' - Spektrum der Wissenschaften, the German Scientific American

'Thomas Häusler paints a vivid and engaging picture of the larger-than-life characters who committed themselves to the development of phage therapy. The science is there - in easily understandable language - but so are Stalin's purges and the Second World War. Horror stories about pus-discharging wounds bring the reader down to earth regularly as well. Bacteriophage therapy has not yet taken off - but promise is there. This authoritative book explains why.' - Professor T. Hugh Pennington, President of the British Society for General Microbiology

'This book is scientific journalism at its best....His thoughtful interviews and strong, ongoing scholarship bring to life the work of Felix d'Herelle and his scientific descendents in tantalizing and accessible fashion and give strong reason to believe that phages can, indeed, be a powerful aid in dealing with the pressing antibiotic crisis.' - Professor Elizabeth Kutter, Evergreen State College, Olympia, USA

'The reader will put down this page-turner inspired, hopeful, and utterly convinced of phage therapy's imminence and inevitability. An indispensable primer for everyone concerned with the onset of the post-antibiotic age.' - Asher Wilf, CEO, Phage-Biotech

'This book is scientific journalism at its best. Häusler shares with us the fascinating fruits of a remarkable year-long odyssey in time and space, during which he explored the depths of archives old and new from the Pasteur Institute to NIH to Los Angeles hospitals to Tbilisi to German companies, digging out long-lost records of far more work (and success) with phage therapy than anyone knew existed. His thoughtful interviews and strong, ongoing scholarship bring to life the work of Felix d'Herelle and his scientific descendents in tantalizing and accessible fashion and give strong reason to believe that phages can, indeed, be a powerful aid in dealing with the pressing antibiotic crisis.' - Professor Elizabeth Kutter, Evergreen State College, Olympia, USA

'Thomas Häusler paints a vivid and engaging picture of the larger-than-life characters who committed themselves to the development of phage therapy. The science is there - in easily understandable language - but so are Stalin's purges and the Second World War. Horror stories about pus-discharging wounds bring the reader down to earth regularly as well. Bacteriophage therapy has not yet taken off - but promise is there. This authoritative book explains why.' - Professor T. Hugh Pennington, president of the British Society for General Microbiology

'This book, documented with rare photographs and abundant references, is scientific journalism at its best and a fascinating contribution to the history of medicine. Phages are now produced by a number of companies and appear, provided that they are used by responsible and knowledgeable practitioners, to be a promising alternative to antibiotics.' - Professor Hans-Wolfgang Ackermann, Laval University, Canada

'The reader will put down this page-turner inspired, hopeful, and utterly convinced of phage therapy's imminence and inevitability. An indispensable primer for everyone concerned with the onset of the post-antibiotic age.' - Asher Wilf, CEO, Phage-Biotech

'An exceptionally thorough book, extraordinarily well written and scientifically authoritative. A book about an explosive subject, that could not have been done better.' - Spektrum der Wissenschaften, the German Scientific American

'Thomas Häusler's gripping book traces the story of the rise, the fall and the possible renaissance of bacteriophages as drugs.' - Basler Zeitung

'The Swiss science journalist Thomas Häusler has written an extremely compelling popular science book.' - Laborjournal

'Häusler tells a forgotten chapter of the history of medicine that ends in the present with a surprising comeback. Riveting.' - Schweizerische Ärztezeitung

'Unusually well-researched, outstandingly well-written. This book deserves to be on the shelf of every private and public library.' - Epoch Times

'FOUR STARS: A good book - excellent use of the stories of real people involved in the fight against bacteria.' - www.popularscience.co.uk

'A salient and thought provoking take on society's attitudes toward disease and medicine.' - www.scienceagogo.com

'All the ingredients of a John Le Carré spy novel: fascinating.' - EMBO Reports

'A thoroughly scholarly account, in a highly entertaining narrative form. A compelling read, populated with fascinating characters.' - Micro Today

'A page turner, full of human drama and the race for discovery.' - Idaho Statesman

'Valuable reading, both for specialists and for interested general readers.' - JAMA

Library Journal
"Antibiotics crisis" is not hyperbole: every year, more than 90,000 Americans die from drug-resistant infections, many of which are contracted in hospitals. Penicillin and the spectrum of antibiotics developed in the mid-20th century are increasingly ineffective against such bacterial infections as tuberculosis, cholera, E-coli, and staphylococcus and streptococcus. Hausler, a Swiss science journalist and editor, reports on the possibility of using bacteriophages, or "phages"-viruses that attack bacteria-to combat multidrug-resistant diseases and infections. Using viruses to fight bacteria is not new: phage research has been conducted in Eastern Europe for upwards of 80 years, and accounts of miracle cures are legion. But now Western biotech companies are starting to pay attention. Convincing the FDA to allow physicians to write prescriptions for viruses may be a daunting task, but the stakes are high and the possibilities compelling. Hausler's engaging and thought-provoking narrative is recommended for most libraries interested in heathcare issues.-Kathy Arsenault, Univ. of South Florida at St. Petersburg Lib. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781403987648
Publisher:
Palgrave Macmillan UK
Publication date:
06/27/2006
Series:
Macmillan Science Series
Edition description:
2nd ed. 2006
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
5.51(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.04(d)

Meet the Author

Thomas Häusler is chief science editor of the Swiss news magazine Facts and has won several awards for his journalistic work. He lives in Switzerland.

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