• Title: Viruses vs. Superbugs: A Solution to the Antibiotics Crisis?
  • Author: Thomas H
  • Released: 2007-12-26
  • Language: English
  • Pages: 256
  • ISBN: 0230551939
  • ISBN13: 978-0230551930
  • ASIN: 0230551939
From *Starred Review* Once upon a time, before penicillin, medicine's perpetual battle with bacterial infection was waged with biological weapons. Phages--viruses that kill bacteria but are harmless to humans--were used to perform duties for which they seemed uniquely destined. The story of bacteriophage therapy, which began in the early twentieth century, is dramatic and frustrating. The drama lies in Swedish science editor Hausler's account of how the ideas of an arrogant rogue scientist, Felix d'Herelle, flew in the faces of his contemporaries and how he persevered to prove his hypotheses, only to see his discovery put on a back burner, at least in the West, when modern antibiotics burst upon the scene. That development would have been fine if it had meant a conclusion to struggle against the likes of strep and staph infections. The problem is, however, that greater and greater numbers of serious bacteria are becoming antibiotic resistant. With nearly 90,000 Americans dying each year because antibiotic treatments are no longer effective, something must be done. Hausler proposes renewed investigation into bacteriophage therapy but paints a dismal picture of its likelihood. It is, he says, effective and organic but unlikely to become a cash cow for pharmaceutical companies. Donna Chavez
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the edition.

Review "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 tells a forgotten chapter of the history of medicine that ends in the present with a surprising comeback. His book is riveting and written in an exemplary style."--Schweizerische Ärztezeitung
 "Thomas Häusler traces in his gripping book 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's book tells the gripping tale of the once hyped now forgotten phage therapy."--Tages-Anzeiger "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. Bacteriophage therapy has not yet taken off - but promise is there. This authoritative book explains why."--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."--Professor Hans-Wolfgang Ackermann, Laval University
 "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, Los Angeles hospitals, Tbilisi clinics and German companies. 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." --Elizabeth Kutter, Evergreen State College
 "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 "FOUR STARS: A good book--excellent use of the stories of real people involved in the fight against bacteria." --www.popularscience.co.uk
 "Unusually well-researched, outstandingly well-written. This book deserves to be on the shelf of every private and public library." --Epoch Times "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  "Valuable reading, both for specialists and for interested general readers." --Journal of the American Medical Association

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