Antibiotic Resistance: The End of Modern Medicine?

Bridget Williams Books
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In ten years’ time, will antibiotics still work? Have we let bacteria get the upper hand in the evolutionary arms race?

In the 1920s the discovery of the antibiotic penicillin started a golden age of medicine. However, experts warn that the end of that age may be just a decade away. In this BWB Text, microbiologist Siouxsie Wiles explores the looming crisis of antibiotic resistance and its threat to New Zealand. Wiles concludes that New Zealand must do more to protect the public from a future without antibiotics.
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About the author

Dr Siouxsie Wiles has made a career of combining her twin passions of bioluminescence (think glow worms and fireflies) and infectious diseases. In a nutshell, Siouxsie and her team make nasty bacteria glow in the dark to better understand how they cause disease and to find new medicines.

Siouxsie studied medical microbiology at the University of Edinburgh, UK and then did a PhD in microbiology at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in Oxford. She spent several years working at Imperial College London where her research culminated in winning the inaugural UK National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research prize. In 2009, Siouxsie was awarded a Sir Charles Hercus Fellowship from the Health Research Council of New Zealand and relocated to the University of Auckland where she now heads up the Bioluminescent Superbugs Lab. Siouxsie has a keen interest in demystifying science for the public.

She is a blogger, podcaster, artist, curator and media science commentator and has won numerous prizes for her efforts, including the Prime Minister’s Science Media Communication Prize and the Royal Society of New Zealand Callaghan Medal. In 2016, Siouxsie was named a Blake Leader by the Sir Peter Blake Leadership Trust.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Bridget Williams Books
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Published on
Apr 10, 2017
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Pages
136
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ISBN
9780947518660
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Language
English
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Genres
Science / Life Sciences / Bacteriology
Science / Life Sciences / Microbiology
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Elinor Levy
The strange new disease SARS erupted apparently out of nowhere and has spread at an astonishing rate. Scary as SARS itself is, the disease is also a warning of many possible such outbreaks to come. Featuring the disturbing story of SARS—where it came from, what it is, and how to protect yourself from it—as well as those of many other recently evolved deadly scourges, The New Killer Diseases is a shocking call to arms.

All around us—in our homes, workplaces, and public spaces—bacteria and viruses are evolving at a feverish rate, and our best defenses against them are in danger of being overwhelmed. The threat posed by emerging infectious diseases is as formidable as any challenge the human race has ever faced, and the evolutionary scales may be tipping in favor of the microbes.

In The New Killer Diseases, a respected immunologist and a veteran science author introduce the vital facts the public must know about the astonishing range of killer microbes we are up against. From the SARS and West Nile viruses to mad cow and Ebola, thirty new deadly diseases have arisen since the 1970s, and twenty old scourges, such as plague and cholera, are reemerging. But the FDA only recently approved the first new type of antibiotic in thirty-four years, and vaccines for many of the most lethal viruses are a long way from development. In addition, researchers have only lately discovered that bacteria have been swapping resistance genes—genes that help them evade the drugs meant to kill them—and are evolving new mechanisms to fight off even our best drugs at a startling pace.

Featuring many remarkable stories of people who have contracted bizarre new afflictions, including that of the doctor who first diagnosed SARS and then died from it, The New Killer Diseases empowers readers by revealing in a gripping, detailed fashion the way these new diseases manifest themselves, the symptoms to watch out for, and how to get a correct diagnosis in time. The book also goes to the front lines of the war being waged by researchers and medical professionals across the country, profiling the pioneers who are leading the fight and introducing the latest scientific developments, from new genetic techniques to promising drug programs, which may allow us to beat back the microbe menace.

The New Killer Diseases arms us with the knowledge to protect ourselves and our families, leaving us alert and fully informed about the troubling extent of the formidable threat we face.


From the Hardcover edition.
Ed Yong
Jennifer Stearns
Microbiology is the study of life itself, down to the smallest particle

Microbiology is a fascinating field that explores life down to the tiniest level. Did you know that your body contains more bacteria cells than human cells? It's true. Microbes are essential to our everyday lives, from the food we eat to the very internal systems that keep us alive. These microbes include bacteria, algae, fungi, viruses, and nematodes. Without microbes, life on Earth would not survive. It's amazing to think that all life is so dependent on these microscopic creatures, but their impact on our future is even more astonishing. Microbes are the tools that allow us to engineer hardier crops, create better medicines, and fuel our technology in sustainable ways. Microbes may just help us save the world.

Microbiology For Dummies is your guide to understanding the fundamentals of this enormously-encompassing field. Whether your career plans include microbiology or another science or health specialty, you need to understand life at the cellular level before you can understand anything on the macro scale.

Explore the difference between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells Understand the basics of cell function and metabolism Discover the differences between pathogenic and symbiotic relationships Study the mechanisms that keep different organisms active and alive

You need to know how cells work, how they get nutrients, and how they die. You need to know the effects different microbes have on different systems, and how certain microbes are integral to ecosystem health. Microbes are literally the foundation of all life, and they are everywhere. Microbiology For Dummies will help you understand them, appreciate them, and use them.

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