germ theory of disease

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pages: 374 words: 114,660

The Great Escape: Health, Wealth, and the Origins of Inequality by Angus Deaton

"Robert Solow", Admiral Zheng, agricultural Revolution, Branko Milanovic, BRICs, British Empire, call centre, clean water, colonial exploitation, Columbian Exchange, creative destruction, declining real wages, Downton Abbey, end world poverty, financial innovation, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, illegal immigration, income inequality, invention of agriculture, invisible hand, John Snow's cholera map, knowledge economy, Louis Pasteur, low skilled workers, new economy, purchasing power parity, randomized controlled trial, rent-seeking, rising living standards, Ronald Reagan, Simon Kuznets, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, structural adjustment programs, The Spirit Level, too big to fail, trade route, very high income, War on Poverty

Wages were high in Britain after its success in the Age of Empire, and those high wages, together with plentiful coal, provided incentives for inventors and manufacturers to come up with the inventions that powered the Industrial Revolution.10 The British Enlightenment, with its relentless search for self-improvement, provided fertile intellectual soil in which those inventions were more likely to come about.11 The cholera epidemics of the nineteenth century were an impetus for crucial discoveries about the germ theory of disease. And the well-funded medical research arising from the HIV/AIDS pandemic of today uncovered the virus and developed medicines that, while not curing the disease, greatly extend the lives of those who are infected. Yet there are also cases in which inspiration never came, in which needs and incentives failed to produce a magic solution, or even a mundane one. Malaria has afflicted human beings for tens of thousands of years, perhaps even for all of human history, and we still have no comprehensive way of preventing or treating it.

In England of the eighteenth century, globalization brought new medicines and new treatments that saved many lives—but mostly the lives of those who could afford them. While the new methods eventually lowered death rates for everyone, it was the aristocracy whose life chances first pulled away from those of the common people. By the end of the nineteenth century, the development and acceptance of the germ theory of disease had set the stage for another explosion of progress as well as for the opening up of another great chasm—this time between the life chances of those who were born in rich countries and the chances of those who were not. I tell the story of the fight to save the lives of children in the world that was left behind. This is a story of progress, mostly after World War II—a catch-up that would begin to close the chasm that had begun to open in the eighteenth century.

I shall return to measures of happiness and life satisfaction in the next chapter, but my main purpose there is to look more widely at the wellbeing of the world today—at those who have made the Great Escape, and then some, as well as those who are still waiting. ONE The Wellbeing of the World THE GREATEST ESCAPE in human history is the escape from poverty and death. For thousands of years, those who were lucky enough to escape death in childhood faced years of grinding poverty. Building on the Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution, and the germ theory of disease, living standards have increased by many times, life spans have more than doubled, and people live fuller and better lives than ever before. The process is still going on. My father lived twice as long as either of my grandfathers; his real income as a civil engineer was many times the income of his father, who was a coal miner; and my education and income as a professor greatly exceed his education and his income.


pages: 667 words: 186,968

The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History by John M. Barry

Albert Einstein, Brownian motion, centralized clearinghouse, conceptual framework, coronavirus, discovery of penicillin, double helix, Fellow of the Royal Society, germ theory of disease, index card, Louis Pasteur, Marshall McLuhan, Mason jar, means of production, statistical model, the medium is the message, the scientific method, traveling salesman, women in the workforce

“a larger circle of hearers”: Quoted in ibid., 117. “poisoning of half the population”: John Duffy, A History of Public Health in New York City 1866–1966 (1974), 113. the zymote theory: For more on zymotes see Phyllis Allen Richmond, “Some Variant Theories in Opposition to the Germ Theory of Disease,” Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences (1954), 295. laurel wreath “such are given to the brave”: Paul De Kruif, Microbe Hunters (1939), 130. “What was theory”: Charles Chapin, “The Present State of the Germ Theory of Disease,” Fists Fund Prize Essay (1885), unpaginated, Chapin papers, Rhode Island Historical Society. “powerless to create an epidemic”: Michael Osborne, “French Military Epidemiology and the Limits of the Laboratory: The Case of Louis-Felix-Achille Kelsch,” in Andrew Cunningham and Perry Williams, eds., The Laboratory Revolution in Medicine (1992), 203.

JAMA 71, no. 16 (Oct. 19, 1918): 1311–12. “Review of Offensive Fighting by Major Donald McRae.” Military Surgeon 43 (Feb. 1919). Rice, G. “Christchurch in the 1918 Influenza Epidemic: A Preliminary Study.” New Zealand Journal of History 13 (1979): 109–37. Richmond, Phyllis Allen. “American Attitudes Toward the Germ Theory of Disease, 1860–1880.” Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences 9 (1954): 428–54. _____. “Some Variant Theories in Opposition to the Germ Theory of Disease.” Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences 9 (1954): 290–303. Rivers, Thomas. “The Biological and the Serological Reactions of Influenza Bacilli Producing Meningitis.” Journal of Experimental Medicine 34, no. 5 (Nov. 1, 1921): 477–94. _____. “Influenzal Meningitis.” American Journal of Diseases of Children 24 (Aug. 1922): 102–24.

“Discussion of Influenza,” Proceedings of the Royal Society of Medicine 12, part 1 (Nov. 13, 1918). Thomson, J. B. “The 1918 Influenza Epidemic in Nashville.” Journal of the Tennessee Medical Association 71, no. 4 (April 1978): 261–70. Tomes, Nancy. “American Attitudes Toward the Germ Theory of Disease: The Richmond Thesis Revisited.” Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences 52, no. 1 (Jan. 1997): 17–50. Tomes, Nancy, and Warner John Harley. “Introduction—Rethinking the Reception of the Germ Theory of Disease: Comparative Perspectives.” Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences 52, no. 1 (Jan. 1997): 7–16. Tomkins, S. M. “The Failure of Expertise: Public Health Policy in Britain During the 1918–19 Influenza Epidemic.” Social History of Medicine 5, no. 3 (Dec. 1992): 435–54.


pages: 1,104 words: 302,176

The Rise and Fall of American Growth: The U.S. Standard of Living Since the Civil War (The Princeton Economic History of the Western World) by Robert J. Gordon

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, airline deregulation, airport security, Apple II, barriers to entry, big-box store, blue-collar work, business cycle, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Charles Lindbergh, clean water, collective bargaining, computer age, creative destruction, deindustrialization, Detroit bankruptcy, discovery of penicillin, Donner party, Downton Abbey, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, feminist movement, financial innovation, full employment, George Akerlof, germ theory of disease, glass ceiling, high net worth, housing crisis, immigration reform, impulse control, income inequality, income per capita, indoor plumbing, industrial robot, inflight wifi, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, invention of air conditioning, invention of the sewing machine, invention of the telegraph, invention of the telephone, inventory management, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, jitney, job automation, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, labor-force participation, Loma Prieta earthquake, Louis Daguerre, Louis Pasteur, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, market fragmentation, Mason jar, mass immigration, mass incarceration, McMansion, Menlo Park, minimum wage unemployment, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, new economy, Norbert Wiener, obamacare, occupational segregation, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, payday loans, Peter Thiel, pink-collar, Productivity paradox, Ralph Nader, Ralph Waldo Emerson, refrigerator car, rent control, Robert X Cringely, Ronald Coase, school choice, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, Skype, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, The Market for Lemons, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Thomas Malthus, total factor productivity, transaction costs, transcontinental railway, traveling salesman, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, undersea cable, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, upwardly mobile, urban decay, urban planning, urban sprawl, washing machines reduced drudgery, Washington Consensus, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, working poor, working-age population, Works Progress Administration, yellow journalism, yield management

Louis Pasteur, Joseph Lister, and Robert Koch have been described as “the remarkable trio who transformed modern medicine.”89 Although individuals such as Pasteur and Koch often get credit for individual cures, progress was a team effort as scientists from the United States and several European countries replicated and improved on the early experiments. Though some doctors welcomed these new discoveries, others did not and were often hostile to the germ theory of disease. It was not unusual “for well-known physicians to get up and leave the hall when medical papers were being read which emphasized the germ theory of disease. They wanted to express their contemptuous scorn for such theories and refused to listen to them.”90 Because of warring factions and different philosophies of medical science, the history of medical schools in the nineteenth century is “a tale of schisms, conspiracies, and coups, often destroying the institutions in the process.”91 Part of the deep divisionresulted from widespread acceptance of homeopathy, not just skepticism about the germ theory.92 Other reasons for the hostility was a widespread suspicion of science, a refusal to believe that widespread epidemics could be caused by nearly invisible microorganisms, and the threat to physicians’ expertise in prescribing the palliative drugs available at the time.

Many sources of the higher standard of living are not included in GDP at all, starting with the enormous advance in the quality of housing represented by the replacement of outhouses by indoor plumbing and the replacement of wood fires and potbelly stoves by central heating. The invention of the antibiotic penicillin might save thousands of lives, each of great value, but the GDP statistics would record only the expenses of the labor and equipment used in its discovery and production. Other similar examples include Pasteur’s germ theory of disease and the attendant emphasis on soap and cleanliness, the development of urban sanitation infrastructure that made indoor plumbing possible, and the realization in the late nineteenth century that some food being sold was tainted, adulterated, or diluted. A final dimension of improvement is the indirect effect of increased life expectancy in providing leisure and locational choice after retirement from work.

We also visit Karl Benz’s lab, where, just ten weeks after Edison’s discovery, he took the last step in developing a reliable internal combustion engine. Although this book is about the United States, many of the inventions were made by foreigners in their own lands or by foreigners who had recently transplanted to America. Among the many foreigners who deserve credit for key elements of the Great Inventions are transplanted Scotsman Alexander Graham Bell for the telephone, Frenchmen Louis Pasteur for the germ theory of disease and Louis Lumière for the motion picture, Englishmen Joseph Lister for antiseptic surgery and David Hughes for early wireless experiments, and Germans Karl Benz for the internal combustion engine and Heinrich Hertz for key inventions that made possible the 1896 wireless patents of the recent Italian immigrant Guglielmo Marconi. The role of foreign inventors in the late nineteenth century was distinctly more important than it was one hundred years later, when the personal computer and Internet revolution was led almost uniformly by Americans, including Paul Allen, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Jeff Bezos, Larry Page, and Mark Zuckerberg.


pages: 243 words: 65,374

How We Got to Now: Six Innovations That Made the Modern World by Steven Johnson

A. Roger Ekirch, Ada Lovelace, big-box store, British Empire, butterfly effect, clean water, crowdsourcing, cuban missile crisis, Danny Hillis, germ theory of disease, Hans Lippershey, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, indoor plumbing, interchangeable parts, invention of air conditioning, invention of the printing press, invention of the telescope, inventory management, Jacquard loom, John Snow's cholera map, Kevin Kelly, Live Aid, lone genius, Louis Pasteur, low earth orbit, Marshall McLuhan, mass immigration, megacity, Menlo Park, Murano, Venice glass, planetary scale, refrigerator car, Richard Feynman, Silicon Valley, Skype, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, the scientific method, transcontinental railway, Upton Sinclair, walkable city, women in the workforce

Chicago’s experience was replicated around the world: sewers removed human waste from people’s basements and backyards, but more often than not they simply poured it into the drinking water supply, either directly, as in the case of Chicago, or indirectly during heavy rainstorms. Drawing plans for sewer lines and water pipes on the scale of the city itself would not be sufficient for the task of keeping the big city clean and healthy. We also needed to understand what was happening on the scale of microorganisms. We needed both a germ theory of disease—and a way to keep those germs from harming us. — WHEN YOU GO BACK to look at the initial reaction from the medical community to the germ theory, the response seems beyond comical; it simply doesn’t compute. It is a well-known story that the Hungarian physician Ignaz Semmelweis was roundly mocked and criticized by the medical establishment when he first proposed, in 1847, that doctors and surgeons wash their hands before attending to their patients.

(As we will see, when soap finally hit the mainstream in the twentieth century, it would be propelled by another new convention: advertising.) But the evangelists for bathing were supported by the convergence of several important scientific and technological developments. Advances of public infrastructure meant that people were much more likely to have running water in their homes to fill their bathtubs; that the water was cleaner than it had been a few decades earlier; and, most important, that the germ theory of disease had gone from fringe idea to scientific consensus. This new paradigm had been achieved through two parallel investigations. First, there was the epidemiological detective work of John Snow in London, who first proved that cholera was caused by contaminated water and not miasmatic smells, by mapping the deaths of a Soho epidemic. Snow never managed to see the bacteria that caused cholera directly; the technology of microscopy at the time made it almost impossible to see organisms (Snow called them “animalcules”) that were so small.

These new lenses enabled the microbiological work of scientists such as Robert Koch, one of the first scientists to identify the cholera bacterium. (After receiving the Nobel Prize for his work in 1905, Koch wrote to Carl Zeiss, “A large part of my success I owe to your excellent microscopes.”) With his great rival Louis Pasteur, Koch and his microscopes helped develop and evangelize the germ theory of disease. From a technological standpoint, the great nineteenth-century breakthrough in public health—the knowledge that invisible germs can kill—was a kind of team effort between maps and microscopes. Today, Koch is rightly celebrated for the numerous microorganisms that he identified through those Zeiss lenses. But his research also led to a related breakthrough that was every bit as important, though less widely appreciated.


pages: 262 words: 66,800

Progress: Ten Reasons to Look Forward to the Future by Johan Norberg

agricultural Revolution, anti-communist, availability heuristic, Bartolomé de las Casas, Berlin Wall, British Empire, business climate, clean water, continuation of politics by other means, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, demographic transition, desegregation, Donald Trump, Flynn Effect, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, Gunnar Myrdal, Haber-Bosch Process, Hans Island, Hans Rosling, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, income inequality, income per capita, indoor plumbing, Isaac Newton, Jane Jacobs, John Snow's cholera map, Kibera, Louis Pasteur, Mahatma Gandhi, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mikhail Gorbachev, more computing power than Apollo, moveable type in China, Naomi Klein, Nelson Mandela, open economy, place-making, Rosa Parks, sexual politics, special economic zone, Steven Pinker, telerobotics, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transatlantic slave trade, very high income, working poor, Xiaogang Anhui farmers, zero-sum game

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Benjamin Disraeli, compared the Thames to the river running through hell in Greek mythology: ‘a Stygian pool, reeking with ineffable and intolerable horrors’.10 During the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, many cities built modern water and sewer systems and began systematic garbage collection. Rising wealth made such costly ventures possible. The major change, though, came with the effective filtering and chlorination of water supplies in the first half of the twentieth century, after the germ theory of disease had been accepted. Life expectancy increased more rapidly in the USA during this period than in any other period in American history, and the introduction of filters and chlorination shows that clean water played a decisive role. One study found that clean water was responsible for forty-three per cent of the total reduction in mortality, seventy-four per cent of the infant mortality reduction and sixty-two per cent of the child mortality reduction.11 This technological shift came late to low- and middle-income countries, but once begun, it happened faster than it once had in the wealthiest countries.

He would devote his life to finding a better and safer response. He had heard tales that dairymaids were protected after they had suffered from cowpox, and started to inoculate people with it to make them immune from smallpox. The Latin word for cow is vacca, and vaccinus means of or from a cow, so Jenner called his new procedure ‘vaccination’. He promoted it relentlessly and in 1800 vaccination had reached most European countries. The germ theory of disease was an enormous breakthrough that made more focused measures possible. It seemed impossible that microorganisms, things that were too small to see, could be a cause of disease and death. But natural experiments began to change the prevailing view. In the mid-nineteenth century, the Hungarian obstetrician Ignaz Semmelweis famously noticed a high incidence of puerperal fever among pregnant women who delivered with the help of physicians, whereas it was much lower among those helped by midwives.

A country with a GDP per capita of $3,000 today has the same life expectancy as would have been predicted for a hypothetical country with a GDP per capita of $30,000 in 1870. This is the great health story of our time: low prices for a good life.25 It is a result of globalization, which makes it easier for countries to use the knowledge and technology that it took generations and vast sums of money to generate. It is difficult to develop cellular technology, the germ theory of disease or a vaccine against measles, but it is easy to use it once someone else has. The infrastructure that has been created for trade and communication also makes it easier to transmit ideas, science and technology across borders, in a virtuous cycle.26 Interestingly, even though there is a strong relationship between health and wealth, it is difficult to find a relationship between health and recent growth rates.


pages: 421 words: 110,272

Deaths of Despair and the Future of Capitalism by Anne Case, Angus Deaton

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, basic income, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, business cycle, call centre, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, Corn Laws, corporate governance, correlation coefficient, crack epidemic, creative destruction, crony capitalism, declining real wages, deindustrialization, demographic transition, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, Donald Trump, Downton Abbey, Edward Glaeser, Elon Musk, falling living standards, Fellow of the Royal Society, germ theory of disease, income inequality, Jeff Bezos, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, labor-force participation, low skilled workers, Martin Wolf, Mikhail Gorbachev, obamacare, pensions crisis, randomized controlled trial, refrigerator car, rent-seeking, risk tolerance, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Tim Cook: Apple, trade liberalization, universal basic income, working-age population, zero-sum game

Not all children got enough or good enough food, childhood diseases like measles were often fatal, vaccinations were far from universal, and many places in the US had yet to make their water safe to drink, failing to properly separate the disposal of sewage from the provision of drinking water, among other things. It is not only unpleasant but extremely dangerous to drink out of a river that someone else, living upstream, is using as a toilet. It is expensive to supply safe water and good sanitation, and it took public health officials a long time to make these arrangements everywhere, even once the basic science—the germ theory of disease—was understood and accepted. The chance of dying increases with age, except at the very beginning of life. Life is most dangerous for babies and for the elderly. In rich countries, infancy is safe; only six out of one thousand American babies do not live to their first birthday, and other countries do even better. In Sweden and Singapore, for example, only two out of one thousand die. The risks are much higher in some poor countries, but even here, progress has been rapid, and there is not a single country in the world whose infant mortality rate is higher now than it was fifty years ago.

Our guess is that the rise of the meritocracy in today’s vastly unequal America has contributed to the “winner-take-all” and much harsher atmosphere in corporations today.14 Perhaps meritocracies destroy themselves over time.15 Death and Education That mortality rates are higher in the US for people with less education has long been known. One of the ways that education is protective against a preventable disease is when the way the disease works is understood but when that understanding is more accessible to those with more education. The demographers Samuel Preston and Michael Haines have shown that at the dawn of the twentieth century, before the germ theory of disease had been widely digested, “the children of physicians had mortality that was scarcely better than that for the average child, indicating fairly clearly that physicians had few weapons at their disposal to advance survival. By 1924, the mortality of physicians’ children was 35 percent below the national average. Children of teachers advanced as rapidly, and all professionals made great strides during the period.”16 Moving closer to the present, smoking rates were very similar by education group before the release in 1964 of the surgeon general’s report on the health risks associated with smoking.

., 280n5 Daoguang Emperor, 109 Davis, Karen, 282n14 death certificates, 3, 29, 101, 118, 119, 136, 269n19 Deaton, Angus, 271n5, 271n7, 272n12, 272n15, 273n26, 276n3, 277n16, 291n37 deductibles, 192, 204 De Loecker, Jan, 287n14, 287n18 Delta Airlines, 231 delusional parasitosis, 112 democracy, ix, 14, 241, 246, 262; white working-class and, 13 Democratic Party, x Democrats, 210 Denmark, 163 depression, 27, 37, 92, 95, 96, 98, 99, 212 Desmond, Matthew, 276n3 detox, 122 Devine, Tom, 111, 273n4, 276n42 diabetes, 43 Diamond, Peter, 289n4 disability, 27, 161; insurance, 81, 85, 92, 157, 162, 252, 279n19 discrimination, 5, 31, 62, 65, 166, 189; reverse, 6, 166, 190; women and, 160 dissatisfaction, 181 dividends, 52 divorce, 98, 149 Dobson, Frank, 199 Doctor, Jason, 263, 274n20 doctors, 26, 52, 72, 73, 75, 84, 116 186, 198, 204, 210, 249; germ theory of disease and, 56; opioids and, 10, 113, 114, 117–19, 121–26, 247, 259; rent-seeking and, 10, 11, 12, 193, 196–97, 200–202, 241–42, 256 Doonesbury (cartoon), 62, 63 Dorn, David, 238, 278n21, 285n9, 285n10, 285n15, 287n8, 288n33 Doty, Michelle M., 284n41, 284n43 Dow Jones Index, 240 Dreamland (Quinones), 146 drug dealers, 10, 66, 69, 109–11, 114, 115, 120, 121 Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), 110, 120, 124–25 drug manufacturers, 10, 40, 85, 112, 120, 124, 126, 127, 192, 193, 201, 202, 242, 259 drug overdoses, 2, 37, 38, 65–66, 111, 137, 185; African Americans and, 119; alcoholism and, 246; bachelor’s degrees and, 114, 121; common features of, 97; mortality rates from, 40, 121; rapid increases in, 45; rise in, 118; suicides and, 246.


pages: 515 words: 117,501

Miracle Cure by William Rosen

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, availability heuristic, biofilm, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, conceptual framework, Copley Medal, creative destruction, demographic transition, discovery of penicillin, Ernest Rutherford, experimental subject, Fellow of the Royal Society, Frederick Winslow Taylor, friendly fire, functional fixedness, germ theory of disease, global supply chain, Haber-Bosch Process, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, Johannes Kepler, John Snow's cholera map, Joseph Schumpeter, Louis Pasteur, medical malpractice, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microbiome, New Journalism, obamacare, out of africa, pattern recognition, Pepto Bismol, randomized controlled trial, selection bias, stem cell, transcontinental railway, working poor

— The building on rue du Docteur Roux in Paris’s 15th arrondissement is constructed in the architectural style known as Henri IV: a steeply pitched blue slate roof with narrow dormers, walls of pale red brick with stone quoins, square pillars, and a white stone foundation. It was the original site, and is still a working part of one of the world’s preeminent research laboratories: the Institut Pasteur, whose eponymous founder opened its doors in 1888. As much as anyone on earth, he could—and did—claim the honor of discovering the germ theory of disease and founding the new science of microbiology. Louis Pasteur was born to a family of tanners working in the winemaking town of Arbois, surrounded by the sights and smells of two ancient crafts whose processes depended on the chemical interactions between microorganisms and macroorganisms—between microbes, plants, and animals. Tanners and vintners perform their magic with hides and grapes through the processes of putrefaction and fermentation, whose complicity in virtually every aspect of food production, from pickling vegetables to aging cheese, would fascinate Pasteur long before he turned his attention to medicine.

Racemic acid, on the other hand, has the same formula—C4H6O6—but rotates light in both directions: It is, in formal terms, both dextrorotatory and levororotatory. This discovery was important enough on its own terms, as any high school chemistry student who has struggled with the concept of stereochemistry can testify. Rotating the lens of history on Pasteur reveals his only serious rival for the title of “Father of the Germ Theory of Disease” (also “Father of Microbiology”) was Robert Koch: his chiral double. Koch was born in 1843 in the town of Claustal in the Kingdom of Hanover, one of the principalities that preceded the creation of the modern German state. Like Pasteur, he was a beneficiary of an entire nation’s newfound enthusiasm for technical education, even more profound in the Germanophile world than in France.

He would become one of the heroes of nineteenth-century Britain, president of the Royal Society, founder of the British Institute of Preventive Medicine (renamed the Lister Institute of Preventive Medicine in 1903), and be made Baron Lister of Lyme Regis. In 1899, the Chinese minister to the Court of St. James’s, commanded by the emperor to produce biographies of the hundred greatest men in the world, announced that the three Englishmen to make the cut were William Shakespeare, William Harvey, and Lister himself. In retrospect, this seems modest enough. The germ theory of disease that had been developed and tested by Pasteur, Koch, and Lister himself produced an astonishing number of discoveries about the causes of disease; not merely anthrax, tuberculosis, and cholera—respectively the bacteria known as Bacillus anthracis, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, and Vibrio cholerae—but gonorrhea (Neisseria gonorrhoeae, discovered 1879), diphtheria (Corynebacterium diphtheriae, discovered 1883), bacterial pneumonia (Streptococcus pneumoniae, discovered 1886), gas gangrene (Clostridium perfringens, discovered 1892), bubonic plague (Yersinia pestis, discovered 1894), dysentery (Shigella dysenteriae, discovered 1898), syphilis (Treponema pallidum, discovered 1903), and whooping cough (Bordatella pertussis, discovered 1906).


pages: 304 words: 88,773

The Ghost Map: A Street, an Epidemic and the Hidden Power of Urban Networks. by Steven Johnson

call centre, clean water, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, Dean Kamen, digital map, double helix, edge city, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, Google Earth, Jane Jacobs, John Nash: game theory, John Snow's cholera map, lone genius, Louis Pasteur, mass immigration, megacity, mutually assured destruction, New Urbanism, nuclear winter, pattern recognition, peak oil, side project, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the scientific method, trade route, unbiased observer, working poor

Ironically, just a few days before Snow had unsuccessfully attempted to see any telltale signs of cholera in the water, an Italian scientist at the University of Florence had discovered a small, comma-shaped organism in the intestinal mucosa of a cholera victim. It was the first recorded sighting of Vibrio cholerae, and Filippo Pacini published a paper that year describing his findings, under the title “Microscopical Observations and Pathological Deductions on Cholera.” But it was the wrong time for such a discovery: the germ theory of disease had not yet entered mainstream scientific thought, and cholera itself was largely assumed by the miasmatists to be some kind of atmospheric pollution, not a living creature. Pacini’s paper was ignored, and V. cholerae retreated back into the invisible kingdom of microbes for another thirty years. John Snow would go to his grave never learning that the cholera agent he had spent so many years pursuing had been identified during his lifetime.

No greater service could be rendered to humanity than this; it has enabled us to meet and combat the disease, where alone it is to be vanquished, in its sources or channels of propagation.… Dr. Snow was a great public benefactor, and the benefits which he conferred must be fresh in the minds of all. Apparently Dr. Snow found a way out of that “gully-hole” after all. BY THE LAST DECADES OF THE NINETEENTH CENTURY, THE germ theory of disease was everywhere ascendant, and the miasmatists had been replaced by a new generation of microbe hunters charting the invisible realm of bacterial and viral life. Shortly after discovering the tuberculosis bacillus, the German scientist Robert Koch isolated Vibrio cholerae while working in Egypt in 1883. Koch had inadvertently replicated Pacini’s discovery of thirty years earlier, but the Italian’s work had been ignored by the scientific establishment, and so it was Koch who won the initial round of acclaim for identifying the agent that had caused so much trauma over the preceding century.

., 50, 61 Chloride of lime, 112–13 Chloroform, 66–67, 145 Snow and, 65 Cholera, 22, 32–35, 37–39, 52 Angola outbreak, 284n “blue stage,” 138 East End outbreak, 209 fear of, 86 modernization of infrastructure and, 214 recovery from, 111 remedies, 47–51 Snow and, 69–77, 98–100, 276n theories of spread, 68–74, 98, 122–23, 131–32, 146–48, 171 water as cure for, 45 See also Broad Street (Soho), cholera outbreak; Vibrio cholerae (cholera bacteria) Cholera, Chloroform, and the Science of Medicine, 259 Cholera in Berwick Street, The (Whitehead), 169–72 Cities, 84–85, 91–97, 231 benefits of, 237–39 crowded, and transmission of cholera, 41–42 in developing countries, 215–16 digital maps of, 220–22 and disease, 235 and environment, 238 flow of ideas, 225–26 infrastructure projects, 214 largest, 215–16 medieval system, 282–83n modern, 232–33, 281–82n nineteenth-century view, 88–91 post-9/11, 283n See also Towns City-planet, 232, 234–35 biological warfare and, 252 safety of, 254–55 threats to, 236, 239 City Press (London), 205 Civilization, 92 barbarism and, 14–15 and smell, 130 Clark, James, 66 Coevolutionary development, 246 Coffee, 104 Coffeehouses, 281n Colosseum (Rome), 5 Communications Internet, 218–19 and medicine, 45–47 in Victorian-era London, 82–83 Complex systems, waste recycling and, 6 Composting pits, 5 COMPSTAT system, 223–24 Confirmation bias, 186–87 Consciousness, human, 44 “Consilience of Inductions, The” (Whewell), 67 Consumers, in cities, 92 Contagion theory of cholera spread, 69–71 Cooper, Edmund, 191–93, 194 Coral reefs, 6–7 Corpses, in Victorian-era London, 13–16 Cost of cholera cures, 47–48 Cow-dung–fueled generators, 217 Craven, Earl of, 15–16 Craven’s Field, 16 Cross Street (Soho), cholera deaths, 139–41 CTX phage, 246 Cubbitt, Thomas, 120 Cummings, Alexander, 11–12 Daily News (London), 191 Death from cholera, 52 in cities, 84–85 Death and Life of the Great American City (Jacobs), 235 Decomposition, bacteria-driven, 7, 129–30 Dehydration, of cholera, 38–39, 246 Developing countries cholera outbreaks, 215 population control, 234 Dickens, Charles, 14–15, 127–28, 134 Bleak House, 13–14, 84–85, 88 and children, 84 Hard Times, 29 Little Dorrit, 29 Nicholas Nickleby, 17 Our Mutual Friend, 2 Diffusion of gases, law of, 145–46 Digital networks, 222 Disease, cities and, 235–36 Divine will, Whitehead and, 170 DNA-based weapons, 251 Doctor of Medicine, 59–60 Snow as, 61–62 Doctors, and treatment of cholera, 50–51 Doctors Without Borders, 284n Dog excrement, recycling of, 217–18 Dot mapping, 192–94 Drinking water contaminated, 40, 42, 43–44 safe, 217 Drug companies, price gouging by, 48 East End, London, cholera outbreak, 209 East London Water Company, 209–11 Ebola virus, 243 Ecosystems, waste recycling and, 6 Ehrlich, Paul, 234 Electricity, 214 Elevation, cholera deaths and, 101–2 Eley, Susannah, 30–31, 77, 81, 143, 186 Eley brothers, 28, 30–31, 81, 143 Eley Brothers factory, 28, 31, 81, 143, 153 Eliot, George, 167 Elizabeth I, Queen of England, 11 Enclosure movement, 94 Energy, cities and, 92–94 Engels, Friedrich, 13, 14–15, 127–28, 260 Environment changes in, and evolution of bacteria, 43–44 in cities, 221–25 organisms and, 40 Environmental health, cities and, 233, 238, 281–82n Epidemics, 227 and history, 32 maps of, 219 population density and, 243 Snow and, 147–48 Epidemiological Society, 193 Epidemiology, 97, 194, 218 Ethanol, 104 Ether, 63–65, 144–45 Eukaryotic cells, 36, 264n Evolution of disease organisms, 42–44 and sense of smell, 129–30 “Exciting” causes of disease, 132–33 Excrement eating, cholera bacterium and, 40–42 Experiments, Snow and, 65 Experimentum crucis, 75, 76–77, 102, 106–9, 143, 153 Board of Health and, 186–87 Farm animals, in Victorian-era London, 27–28 Farming, efficiency of, 92–93 Farming system, disruption of, 94 Farr, William, 69, 73, 79, 80, 100–102, 127–28, 136, 148, 168, 225 and East End cholera outbreak, 209–12 records of, 140, 141–42, 272n and waterborne theory, 211–12 Weekly Returns of Birth and Deaths, 100–101, 102, 106, 127, 132, 150, 153, 166, 177, 191 and “Great Stink,” 204 and waterborne theory, 204 Fear, urban life and, 84–87 Ferguson, Daniel, 64 Fermentation, 104 Fertilizer, human waste as, 115–16 Fleet River, 119 Folk remedies, 46, 49–50 Fossil fuels, limited supply, 237–39 French novels, of nineteenth century, 84 Frerichs, Ralph, 259 Freud, Sigmund, 134 Full House (Gould), 36 G (Mr., tailor), 29, 31, 32, 34–35 General Board of Health, 112–13, 118. See also Board of Health Generator, waste-fueled, 217 Genetic studies, application of, 249 Genetic tolerance for alcohol, 103–4 Genomic revolution, 249–50 GeoSentinel, 219 Germ theory of disease, 99, 211, 266n Ghost class, London, 2 Global challenges, 256 Global energy network, 93–94 Global Report on Human Settlements (UN), 232 Global warming, 237–39 Globe (London), and cholera outbreak, 160–61 Golden Square (Soho), 16, 25, 27, 159 cholera outbreak, 51, 53, 81, 83, 161–62 deaths, 57–58, 112 map, 141 Snow and, 75–77, 109 water, 30–31 See also Broad Street (Soho); Soho (London district) Google, 219–20 Gossip, and cholera outbreak, 83 Gould, John, 31 Gould, Stephen Jay, 36 Government and mapping technology, 222 and public health, 113, 120–21 and sanitation, 218 urban, and information, 224 Graham, Thomas, 145 Grand Junction Water Works, 142 Great Exhibition (1851), 12, 41–42, 267n Great Plague (1665), 15–16 “Great Stink” (Thames pollution), 205–6, 207 “Green” cities, 238 Green’s Court, 52, 81–82 Gunpowder, manufacture of, 9 Hall, Benjamin, 29, 112, 134, 145, 147, 163–66, 167, 168, 172, 179, 201 and miasma theory, 183–84, 186–87 and Snow, 204 and waterborne theory, 183 Hamburg, cholera outbreak, 215 Hard Times (Dickens), 29 Harington, John, 11 Harnold, John, 70–71 Harrison (Berwick Street surgeon), 53–54 Hassall, Arthur, 99 Health, cities and, 232 Hemenway, Toby, 233 H5N1 (avian flu virus), 243–48 Hippocrates, and cholera, 33 On Air, Water, and Places, 126–27 History epidemic disease and, 32 turning points, 162–63 London sewers as, 207 urbanization and, 232 Hogarth, William, 18 Homelessness, 3, 218 Hooke, Robert, 281n Horsleydown, cholera outbreak, 70–73 Hospitals, in urban centers, 232–33 Huggins, Edward and John, 142–43, 161 Human consciousness, 44 Human culture, and excrement eating, 40–42 Human excrement, collection of, 8–13 Human genetic change, 42 Human organization, patterns of, 93–94 Hunter-gatherer societies, 92, 103–4, 130 Hunterian School of Medicine (London), 60 Hydrogen sulfide, 129–30, 133 Hysteria, in Victorian era, 87 Iberall, Arthur, 93–94 Ideas cross-disciplinary flow of, in cities, 225–26 incorrect, 126 Immune system, 133 Index case (Broad Street), 177, 178–79, 199–200 India, cholera outbreaks, 215 Industrial Age, 18 and cholera, 33 See also Industrial Revolution Industrial Revolution, 92–93, 94–95, 271n Infant mortality rates, 232, 233 Infectious diseases, Web mapping of, 219 Influence of Snow’s map, 198–201 Information technology, 218–19, 224–25 Inner-city air, as disease source, 69–70, 74 Inner-city life, in Victorian era, 171 Insulin, 223 Intellectual progress, 135, 149 Internal-constitution theory of cholera spread, 132–33 Internet, 218–19, 236–37 John Snow sites, 259, 261 Istanbul, Sultaneyli village, 216 Jacobs, Jane, 18, 221–22 Death and Life of the Great American City, 235 James, John, 34 Jennings, George, 12 John Snow (pub), 228 Kamen, Dean, 217 Kay-Shuttleworth, James, 265n Kemp House, 227 Killingworth Colliery, 59 Knossos, composting pits, 5 Knowledge, Internet and, 218–19 Koch, Robert, 213 Koch, Tom, 196, 275n Lactose tolerance, 103–4 Lambeth water company, 105–8 Lancet, The, 46 and contagion theory, 69 editors of, 15, 168 obituary of Snow, 206 Snow and, 61, 64, 205, 213, 269n Largest cities, 215–16 Latta, Thomas, 45, 155 Lea River, 210–11 Leather-tanning process, 4, 263–64n Lewis, Sarah, 21–22, 178–79, 181, 187–88 Lewis, Thomas, 21, 31, 187 Lewis infant, 21–22, 35, 54, 178–79 Whitehead and, 199 Life expectancy, in cities, 84, 232–33, 236 Lion Brewery, 28–29, 31, 81, 142–43, 146, 153 Liszt, Franz, 18 Little Dorrit (Dickens), 29 Local knowledge, 147 Internet and, 218–19 in urban environments, 225 Locock, Dr.


pages: 357 words: 110,072

Trick or Treatment: The Undeniable Facts About Alternative Medicine by Edzard Ernst, Simon Singh

animal electricity, Barry Marshall: ulcers, Berlin Wall, correlation does not imply causation, false memory syndrome, Florence Nightingale: pie chart, germ theory of disease, John Snow's cholera map, Louis Pasteur, meta analysis, meta-analysis, placebo effect, profit motive, publication bias, randomized controlled trial, Ronald Reagan, Simon Singh, The Design of Experiments, the scientific method

The rise and fall and rise of homeopathy Homeopathy spread rapidly through Europe during the first half of the nineteenth century, so much so that Hahnemann’s philosophy became well established during his own lifetime. The idea that ‘like cures like’ and the belief that diseases were ‘derangements of the spirit-like power that animates the human body’ sounded similar to some elements of the still highly respected Greek philosophy of medicine, so homeopathy was greeted with enthusiasm. Moreover, Hahnemann’s ideas were emerging before scientists had firmly established the germ theory of disease or the atomic theory of matter, so the vital force and ultra-weak dilutions did not sound quite so strange as they do today. Signs of Hahnemann’s growing influence ranged from opening the world’s first homeopathic hospital in Leipzig in 1833 to the use of homeopathy to treat Napoleon’s pubic lice. Homeopathy became particularly fashionable in Paris in the 1830s, because Hahnemann set up home in the city after marrying a beautiful Parisian socialite named Marie Mélanie d’Herville-Gohier – he was eighty years old and she was in her early thirties.

Each black oblong represents one death, and the Broad Street pump can be seen at the centre of the epidemic. Other major scientific breakthroughs included vaccination, which had been growing in popularity since the start of the 1800s, and Joseph Lister’s pioneering use of antiseptics in 1865. Thereafter Louis Pasteur invented vaccines for rabies and anthrax, thus contributing to the development of the germ theory of disease. Even more importantly, Robert Koch and his pupils identified the bacteria responsible for cholera, tuberculosis, diphtheria, typhoid, pneumonia, gonorrhoea, leprosy, bubonic plague, tetanus and syphilis. Koch deservedly received the 1905 Nobel Prize for Medicine for these discoveries. Without any comparable achievements attributed to homeopathy, and without any rigorous evidence or scientific rationale to support it, the use of these ultra-dilute homeopathic remedies continued to decline into the twentieth century in both Europe and America.

The completely crass nature of alternative-medicine degrees is easily demonstrated by a question posed in 2005 to students taking the ‘Homeopathic Materia Medica 2A’ examination at the University of Westminster, London: ‘Psorinum and Sulphur are Psoric remedies. Discuss the ways in which the symptoms of these remedies reflect their miasmatic nature.’ This question is a throwback to the Dark Ages of medicine, when it was believed that disease was caused by miasmas, which were poisonous vapours – this idea became obsolete in the late nineteenth century when scientists developed the more accurate and useful germ theory of disease. Professor David Colquhoun surveyed the state of play in Britain in 2007 and discovered that there are sixty-one degree courses in alternative medicine, of which forty-five are BSc degrees, spread across sixteen universities. Five of the BSc degrees specialize in homeopathy – this means that students spend three years studying a subject that we have demolished in this book in a single chapter.


From Satori to Silicon Valley: San Francisco and the American Counterculture by Theodore Roszak

Buckminster Fuller, germ theory of disease, global village, Haight Ashbury, Internet Archive, Marshall McLuhan, megastructure, Menlo Park, Norbert Wiener, Silicon Valley, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, upwardly mobile, Whole Earth Catalog

advanced disrepair where had once pitched tents in the living or spent the night in sleeping bags. In the kitchens, pantries were filled with stale brown and active vermin; one might in the refrigerators, rice find several months' supply of spoiled groceries and well-sprouted soy cakes. In these quarters, one sensed that organic foods were a sort of talisman, sufficiently potent in their very presence to repeal the germ theory of disease. Also 4 there were the signs many animals once resident or still haunting the premises - unleashed, unhousebroken, very likely of unfed. In the Haight-Ashbury and the East Bay, there less there was a cult of the "organic dog" - the washed and tamed, the were neighborhoods better. in larger, the For a period, Berkeley and San Francisco that took on the look and the fragrance of barnyards or hunting camps.


pages: 372 words: 111,573

10% Human: How Your Body's Microbes Hold the Key to Health and Happiness by Alanna Collen

Asperger Syndrome, Barry Marshall: ulcers, Berlin Wall, biofilm, clean water, correlation does not imply causation, David Strachan, discovery of penicillin, Drosophila, Fall of the Berlin Wall, friendly fire, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, hygiene hypothesis, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, illegal immigration, John Snow's cholera map, Kickstarter, Louis Pasteur, Maui Hawaii, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microbiome, phenotype, placebo effect, the scientific method

‘Doctors are gentlemen, and gentlemen’s hands are clean,’ said one leading obstetrician at the time, all the while infecting and killing dozens of women each month. The mere notion that doctors could be responsible for bringing death, not life, to their patients caused huge offence, and Semmelweis was cast out of the establishment. Women continued to risk their lives giving birth for decades, as they paid the price of the doctors’ arrogance. Twenty years later, the great Frenchman Louis Pasteur developed the germ theory of disease, which attributed infection and illness to microbes, not miasma. In 1884, Pasteur’s theory was proved by the elegant experiments of the German Nobel prize-winning doctor Robert Koch. By this time, Semmelweis was long dead. He had become obsessed by childbed fever, and had gone mad with rage and desperation. He railed against the establishment, pushing his theories and accusing his contemporaries of being irresponsible murderers.

Page numbers in italic refer to the illustrations abscesses 37 Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam 255, 256–7 accidents, Toxoplasma infection and 97 acetate 107, 195, 217 acne 23, 129, 141, 142–4, 168 Actinobacteria 226, 230 adenoviruses 75, 76–7, 78 adipose cells see fat cells Adlerberth, Ingegerd 131 adrenalin 104–5 affluence, and twenty-first-century illnesses 46–8 Africa: asthma 50 births 214 diet and gut microbiota 184, 185, 262–3 Ebola epidemic 115 garden warblers 55 personal hygiene 176 age, and twenty-first-century illnesses 48–50 ageing 228, 231, 235, 268 agriculture: antibiotic use 147–8, 160–4, 165, 272 Neolithic Revolution 184–5, 201 Akkermansia 283–4 Akkermansia muciniphila 79–81, 193–4, 258 Alabama 46 alcohol hand-rubs 175 Alexander, Albert 37 Aliivibrio fischeri 12 Allen-Vercoe, Emma 109–10, 111, 112, 259–60, 261–2 allergies 24, 38–9, 43, 44, 48 affluence and 46–7 after Caesarean birth 212 antibacterial products and 171 antibiotics and 130, 166–7 antihistamines 39, 116, 269 bottle-feeding and 223 in developing countries 47 family size and 117, 118 gender differences 51, 52 hygiene hypothesis 117–19, 121, 130–2, 145 immune system and 44–5, 116–21, 130–1 increase in incidence 52, 116 and infections 116–19 microbes and 131–2 probiotics and 242 racial differences 50 Alm, Eric 253 Alps 115 alternative medicine 137–9 Alvarez, Walter 238 Amazon rainforest 262, 282 American Gut Project (AGP) 4–5, 281–2 Amerindians 262–3 amino acids 70, 71, 180, 271 ammonia 176–7 ammonia-oxidising bacteria (AOBs) 176–8 anaemia 221 anaerobic bacteria 95 anaphylactic attacks 38 androgens 143 Animalia 16, 17 animals: allergies to 119 antibiotics as growth promoters 147–8, 160–4, 272 coprophagy 245–8 Neolithic Revolution 184–5, 201 transmission of microbes 115 see also individual types of animal anthrax 115 antibacterial products 169–72, 175, 214–15 antibiotics 2, 147–68, 276–7, 281, 285 and acne 143 and allergies 130, 166–7 antibiotic resistance 152, 153, 154–5, 156 and autism 86, 90–2, 94–5, 106–7, 111, 165–6 and autoimmune diseases 167–8 benefits of 168 and birth 163, 215 broad-spectrum antibiotics 156, 270 and Clostridium difficile 157, 234, 250 development of 36–7 and diarrhoea 155, 157, 241–2 effects on microbiota 129, 157–8, 161 as growth promoters for animals 147–8, 160–4, 272 harmful side-effects 5–6, 155–6, 269 and immune system 129–30 and irritable bowel syndrome 64–5 lactobacilli and 206–7 and life expectancy 28 and obesity 147–9, 159–65 residues in vegetables 164–5 and stomach ulcers 74 and twenty-first-century illnesses 158–9 unnecessary prescriptions 152–3, 269–70 antibodies 30, 139, 231 antidepressants 269 antigens 132–3 antihistamines 39, 116, 269 ants 84 anxiety disorders 42, 51, 99, 175 AOBiome 176, 177–8 apes 16 apocrine glands 177 appendicitis 14, 15–16, 43, 223, 266 appendix 13–16, 21, 45, 203, 208, 266 appetite control 67–8, 72–3, 80, 196 arabinoxylan 194 Arabs 46 archaea 8 Argentina 210 arginine 271 arthritis 183, 196 asbestos 170 Asia 47, 214 Asperger syndrome 87 asthma 44, 49 antibiotics and 130, 166–7 bottle-feeding and 223 fibre and 199 immune system and 116, 196 incidence 38, 39, 47, 52 racial differences 50 wealth and 47 Atkinson, Richard 74–5, 77 attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) 42, 98–9, 105, 108, 175 aureomycin 160 Australia: acne 142 birth 214–15 encephalitis lethargica 173 faecal transplants 250–1, 259 fruit and vegetable consumption 273 racial differences in diseases 50 sugar consumption 188, 189 twenty-first-century illnesses 46 autism 38, 43, 44, 49, 85–96 after Caesarean sections 212 antibiotics and 86, 90–2, 94–5, 106–7, 111, 165–6 autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) 87–8 behaviour problems 88, 108–9 and coprophagy 246 and ear infections 166 faecal transplants and 254–5 gastrointestinal symptoms 45, 85–7, 90 gender differences 51, 89 genetics and 89 immune system and 106, 108 incidence of 42, 46, 53, 88–9 lipopolysaccharide and 141 microbes and 90–2, 94–6, 109–12, 165–6 probiotics and 242 propionate and 107–9 racial differences 50–1 savants 87, 108 symptoms 87–8, 282 autoimmune diseases 24, 38, 39–41, 43 affluence and 47 and antibiotics 167–8 appendix and 16 and Caesarean sections 212 in childhood 49 in developing countries 47 faecal transplants and 254 gender differences 51, 52, 267 immune system and 44–5 incidence of 46 IPEX syndrome 133 probiotics and 242 racial differences 50 T helper cells and 119 see also individual diseases autointoxication 236–8 autopsies 33 babies 273–4 antibiotics 152–3, 158, 159–60, 161–2 bottle-feeding 220–6, 273–5 breast-feeding 216–20, 221, 222–6, 230–1, 274–5, 278, 285 Caesarean births 209–15, 220, 274, 278 caul births 214 colic 215–16 ear infections 151 gut microbiota 131, 217 immune system 208–9, 217, 227 infant mortality 222–3 probiotics and 242 transfer of microbes to 204–9, 212–14 vaginal delivery 209–12, 220, 274, 278 water birth 214 weaning 226 wet nursing 220–1 Bäckhed, Fredrik 66–7, 71, 147, 160 bacteria: alcohol hand-rubs 175 ammonia-oxidising bacteria 176–8 anaerobic bacteria 95 antibacterial products 169–72 antibiotic resistance 152, 153, 154–5, 156 collateral damage from antibiotics 155–6, 157 colony-forming units 244 DNA sequencing 17 lipopolysaccharide 140 and mitochondria 123, 123 prebiotics 258 probiotics 237–44 quorum sensing 136 and stomach ulcers 74 see also gut microbiota; microbes and individual types of bacteria bacteriocins 161, 206–7, 208 bacteriocytes 205 bacteriotherapy 245, 248 Bacteroides 23, 157, 194 Bacteroides fragilis 134–5 Bacteroides plebeius 192 Bacteroidetes 68–9, 70, 81, 185, 186, 187, 191, 226, 282 BALB mice 99 barley 139, 199 basal ganglia 174–5 bats 1–2, 100, 115, 124–5, 181, 182, 236 beans, fibre content 190, 191 Bedouin 201 Bedson, Henry 26 bees 124 behaviour: in autism 88, 108–9 changed by microbes 84–5, 96–7, 112–13 neurotransmitters 103, 104–5 propionate and 107–9 Bengmark, Stig 46 Bifidobacterium 193–4, 196–7, 217, 226, 239, 240, 258, 284 Bifidobacterium infantis 93 bile 145, 263 bioluminescence 12 bipolar disorder 105 birds 54–6, 205 birth 278 antibiotics in 163, 215 Caesarean section 209–15, 220, 274 caul births 214 childbed fever 32–3 home births 214 hormones 220 hygiene 214–15 transfer of microbes to babies 205–7, 212–13 vaginal deliveries 209–12, 220, 274, 278 water birth 214 bison 125–6 Blaser, Martin 162, 163, 182 blood 181 blood pressure 199, 231, 256 blood sugar levels 256 blood transfusions 249, 253, 254 bobcats 84, 97 Body Mass Index (BMI) 41, 69, 79, 161, 188, 193, 197 body odour 175–7 Bolte, Andrew 86–7, 88, 89–92, 94–6, 110, 111, 112, 165–6 Bolte, Ellen 86–7, 88, 89–92, 94–6, 106, 110–11, 112, 165–6 Bolte, Erin 86, 110, 111–12 Borody, Tom 250–2, 254–5, 259 bottle-feeding 220–6, 273–5 Boulpon, Burkina Faso 184, 185, 190 brain: connections to gut 92–3, 104–5, 106–7, 109–10 development of 93–4 encephalitis lethargica 173–4 immune system 103–4, 105 inflammation 108 memories 108–9 microbes and 98–9 neurotransmitters 103, 104–5 obsessive-compulsive disorder 172–3, 174 propionate and 107–9 strokes 50, 107, 183, 199, 256, 268 synapses 120 tetanus 91 Whipple’s disease 85 see also mental health conditions Brand-Miller, Jennie 215–16 Brazil 46, 47, 209, 212 bread 198, 199–200, 202 breast cancer 44, 145 breast-feeding 216–20, 221, 222–6, 230–1, 274–5, 278, 285 Britain: antibiotic use 130, 150–1 breast-feeding 225 Caesarean sections 210, 211–12 Clostridium difficile 156 consumption of fats and sugar 188 diabetes in children 40–1 fall in calorific intake 189 fruit and vegetable consumption 190–1, 273 gut microbes in babies 131 obesity 42, 58 broccoli 198 bronchitis 152 ‘Bubble Boy’ 126–8, 181 Burgess, James 253 Burkina Faso 184, 185, 190, 191, 263 Butler, Chris 153–4, 155 butyrate 107, 195, 196–7, 217, 257, 284 caecum 13, 21, 45, 128 Caesarean birth 209–15, 220, 274 caffeine 73, 74 cakes 198 California Institute of Technology 134 calories: calculating contents of foods 69–70 dieting 149, 186–7 differences in weight gain 77–8 fall in consumption of 189 microbes and extraction of 67, 70–2 and obesity 56–7, 61 Campylobacter jejuni 65 Canada 46, 47, 51, 62, 99, 106, 173, 259–60 cancer: ageing and 49 blood cancer 16 bottle-feeding and 223 breast cancer 44 as cause of death 268 cervical cancer 144 chemotherapy 270 colon cancer 23–4, 144, 145, 258 diet and 183 immune system and 120–1 infections and 144 liver cancer 144–5 lymphoma 127 metabolic syndrome and 256 microbes and 144–5 obesity and 42, 50, 145 prebiotics and 258 shingles and 271 stomach cancer 144 Cani, Patrice 78–9, 80–1, 193–4, 197 car accidents 97 carbohydrates: calorie content 69 dieting 185–8 digestion of 180 effects of 198 fibre 192 oligosaccharides 216–18 types of 197–8 carbolic acid 34, 36 Carmody, Rachel 179–80, 182, 198–9 carnivores 181–2, 192, 203, 263 casein 111, 200 cats 96 cattle 12–13, 181, 192, 201, 204, 272 caul births 214 cells, mitochondria 123, 123 cellulose 191, 192 centenarians 265 Centers for Disease Control (CDC) 88–9, 152, 212 Central America 100 Centre for Digestive Diseases, Sydney 250–2, 254 cervical cancer 144 Chain, Sir Ernst Boris 37 Charles University, Prague 97 cheese 159 cheetahs 124 chest infections 153 chickens: antibiotic treatment 147–8, 165 virus disease 57, 61, 74–5, 76–7, 78 Chida, Yoichi 93 childbed fever 32–3, 34 childbirth see birth children: allergies 38–9, 116–17 antibiotic use 151, 161–2, 165–6 autism 88–9, 165–6 brain development 93–4 death rates 28, 31 ear infections 86, 87, 90, 94, 151, 152, 153, 166, 222 fat intake 190 gut microbiota 226–7 hygiene 278–9 infectious diseases 31 obesity 58, 223–4 twenty-first-century illnesses 49 see also babies Children of the 90s project 130 chimpanzees 102, 245–7 China 47, 209, 249–50 chlorinated lime 33 chlorinated water 172 chlorine 35–6, 62 chloroform 172 cholera 15, 27, 30, 34–5, 45–6, 135–7, 139 Cholera Auto-Inducer 1 (CAI–1) 136 cholesterol 194, 229, 231, 256 Church, Andrew 173–4 ciprofloxacin 157–8 cleaning products 169–72, 175, 214–15 clindamycin 157 Clinton, Bill 10 Clostridium 96, 107, 145 Clostridium bolteae 106 Clostridium difficile 90, 271 antibiotics and 156–7, 234–5, 241, 250 in babies’ gut microbiota 213 bottle-feeding and 222 deaths from 156, 245 faecal transplants 249, 250, 251, 252–3, 259, 260 Lactobacillus and 206 symptoms 156 Clostridium tetani 90–2, 94, 95, 96, 110–11 clothing 176 cockroaches 204–5 coeliac disease 39, 41, 139–40, 183, 200, 202, 212 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, New York State 7, 24 colds 51, 129–30, 152, 167 colic, infantile 215–16 colitis, ulcerative 42, 49, 144 colon: autointoxication 236–8 colon cancer 23–4, 144, 145, 258 colonic irrigation 237 digestion 180–1 toxic megacolon 156, 245 see also gut microbiota; inflammatory bowel disease; intestines; irritable bowel syndrome colony-forming units (CFUs), bacteria 244 colostrum 217, 219, 220 constipation 62–3, 65, 238, 251, 254 contraceptives 102 cooking food 199 coprophagy 245–8 Cordyceps fungi 84 Cornell University 230 Corynebacterium 20, 21, 168–9, 177, 213 cough, sudden-onset 155 cowpox 27, 29 cows 12–13, 181, 192, 201, 204, 272 cow’s milk 216, 221 Crapsule 259 Crohn’s disease 42, 49, 52, 144 Cuba 210 Cyanobacteria 65 cytokines 48, 105, 106, 141 D-Day landings (1944) 37, 150, 158 dairy produce 200, 201 Dale, Russell 173–4 dander 119 Danish National Birth Cohort 161–2 Darwin, Charles 280 The Descent of Man 13, 14 The Expression of Emotions in Man and Animals 92 On the Origin of Species 124, 279 Dawkins, Richard, The Selfish Gene 125, 126 death 235–6 babies and children 28, 31, 222–3 causes of 268 Clostridium difficile 245 diarrhoea and 15 dementia 105 dendritic cells 219 Denmark 52, 161–2, 167–8 deodorants 175, 177, 178 deoxycholic acid (DCA) 145 depression 42, 45, 51, 65, 98, 103–4, 105, 141 dermatitis 23 developing countries: antibiotic use 153–4 twenty-first-century illnesses 53 Dhurandhar, Nikhil 56–7, 61, 74–5, 76–7, 82, 149 diabetes 38, 44, 139, 269 and antibiotics 167–8 bottle-feeding and 223, 224 breast-feeding and 231 and Caesarean sections 212 in childhood 4, 119 diet and 183 faecal transplants 255 gender differences 267 incidence of 39, 40–1, 47, 52, 158 leaky guts and 140 lipopolysaccharide and 141 metabolic syndrome 256–7 obesity and 42, 50, 256 probiotics and 242–3, 257–8 racial differences 50 symptoms 39–40 diarrhoea: antibiotics and 155, 157, 241–2 and autism 45, 85–7, 90 as cause of death 15, 27, 268 cholera 34–5, 135–7 Clostridium difficile 156, 222, 234–5, 241 and coprophagy 246 faecal transplants 250–1, 260 irritable bowel syndrome 62–5 probiotics and 241–2 diet see food dieting 59, 148–9, 184, 186–7, 197, 199 digestive system 180 see also colon; gut microbiota; intestines digoxin 271 diphtheria 27, 28 diseases: antibodies 30, 139, 231 diet and 183 epidemiology 35, 45–6 genes and 10, 43–4, 268 germ theory 34, 236 infectious diseases 27–9, 43, 115, 118, 153–4 obesity as infectious disease 75–7 pathogens 28–9 transmission of microbes 114–16 vaccinations 25, 26–7, 29–31, 35, 91, 118, 165 water-borne diseases 34–6 see also antibiotics and individual diseases DNA: and cancer 120–1, 144, 145 DNA sequencing 4, 9–11, 16–17, 65 human genome 279–80 doctors: antibiotic prescriptions 152–3, 277 hospital hygiene practices 31–4 Dodd, Diane 100–1 dogs 84, 85, 124 Dominguez-Bello, Maria Gloria 214, 278, 285 Dominican Republic 210 donors: faecal transplants 261, 262 sperm donors 260–1 dopamine 104–5 drugs: gut microbiota and 270–2 see also antibiotics dummies 151 dysbiosis 64–6 dysentery 15, 27 E. coli 62, 239, 254 ear infections 86, 87, 90, 94, 151, 152, 153, 166, 222 East Africa 176 Eastern Europe 47 Ebola 115 eccrine glands 177 ecological succession 208 eczema 38, 49 antibiotics and 130, 166–7 bottle-feeding and 223 incidence 39, 47, 52 prebiotics and 258 probiotics and 242 Eggerthella lenta 271 Egypt 201 Eiseman, Ben 251 elephants 245 Elizabeth II, Queen of England 265 emotions, and irritable bowel syndrome 92–3 encephalitis lethargica 173–4 energy: in food 69–72 mitochondria 123 storage in body 77–8 enterobacteria 131 Enterococcus 219 environment, and twenty-first-century illnesses 44 enzymes 12–13, 180, 182, 191, 192, 263 epidemiology 35, 45–6 epinephrine 104–5 Epstein-Barr virus 127 Eubacterium rectale 197 Eukarya 16 Europe: acne 142 antibiotic use 150, 163–4, 272 birth 214–15 breast-feeding 224 encephalitis lethargica 173 fat consumption 188 hygiene hypothesis 117 racial differences in diseases 50 see also individual countries evolution 11–12, 44, 84–5, 109, 124–6 fabrics, clothing 176 Faecalibacterium 284 Faecalibacterium prausnitzii 197 faeces: and birth 206, 207 coprophagy 245–7 DNA sequencing microbes in 23 faecal transplants 245, 248–57, 258–62 see also gut microbiota families, microbiotas 228 farming see agriculture Fasano, Alessio 136–7, 139–40, 200 fat cells: appetite control 72, 73 fibre and 196 lipopolysaccharide and 141 in obese people 78–9, 141 in pregnancy 230 storage of fat 72 FATLOSE (Faecal Administration To LOSE insulin resistance) 256–7 fats: calorie content 69, 77–8 consumption of 188, 189–90 dieting 186–8 digestion of 71, 180 high-fat diets 192–3, 194 fatty acids 180, 188 fibre: and Akkermansia 81, 193–4 and appendicitis 15 and butyrate 196–7 consumption of 190–1 in faeces 23 Five-a-Day campaign 273 and gut microbiota 191–9, 202–3, 204, 263, 276, 282–4 and obesity 192–5, 197 prebiotics 258 wheat and gluten intolerance 199–202 Finegold, Sydney 95–6, 106–7, 109 Firmicutes 68–9, 70, 81, 161, 185, 186, 187, 191, 226, 282 First World War 28, 36 fish, gut microbiota 205 Five-a-Day campaign 273 Fleming, Sir Alexander 36, 37, 154, 156 flies, fruit 100–1 Florence 184, 190, 191 Florey, Ethel 37 Florey, Howard 36–7 flour, fibre content 198 flu 27, 28, 48, 50, 129, 152, 167 folic acid 227–8 food 179–203, 272–3 and ageing 231 allergies and intolerances 38, 47, 49, 199–202 antibiotic residues in 164–5 calorie content 69–72 consumption of fats 188 cooking 199 digestion of 23 fibre content 190–9, 202–3, 273, 276, 282–4 and gut microbiota 184–8 healthy diet 183–4 Neolithic Revolution 184–5 packaged foods 182–3, 202 preservatives 202 sugar consumption 188–9 weaning babies 226 Food and Drug Administration (FDA) 172, 252, 272 food poisoning 15, 63–4, 65, 258 food supplements, prebiotics 258 formula milk 220–6 France 115, 160–1, 211 free-from foods 200 free will 112 Freud, Sigmund 98, 238 frogs 83–4, 124 fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS) 193–4, 258 fructose 180, 188 fruit 198, 273, 276 fruit flies 100–1 fungi 8, 84 galacto-oligosaccharides 258 galactose 207, 216 gangrene 34 garden warblers 54–6, 57, 73, 77, 78 gastric bypasses 81–2 gastritis 74 gastroenteritis 15, 16, 62, 63–4, 65, 167, 172, 222 Gattaca (film) 280 Ge Hong, Handbook of Emergency Medicine 249–50 gender differences: autism 51, 89 Toxoplasma infection 96–7 twenty-first-century illnesses 51–2, 267 Generation X 224 genes: appetite control 67–8 and autism 89 cholera bacteria 136–7 coeliac disease 139–40 faecal transplants 261 and gut microbiota 227 human genome 3–4, 7–10, 43–4, 279–80 in human microbiome 8, 11, 279 and lactose intolerance 201 and leaky gut 196–7 mutations 44 natural selection 125, 126 and obesity 60 and pheromones 102 and predisposition to disease 10, 43–4, 268 sperm donors 260–1 and vitamins 228 and weight control 71–2 genome-wide association studies (GWAS) 268 gentamycin 161 George V, King of England 265 germ-free mice 17–18, 66–9, 128, 134, 230 germ theory of disease 34, 236 Germany 46–7 giardiasis 15, 27 glucose 39–40, 180, 207, 216, 229, 256, 257 gluten 42, 111, 139–40, 142, 199–202 glycerols 180 gnotobiotic mice 17 goats 115, 201 Gombe Stream National Park, Tanzania 246 gonorrhoea 215 Goodall, Jane 246 Gordon, Jeffrey 18, 24, 67, 247, 262 GPR43 (G-Protein-coupled Receptor 43) 195–6, 195 grains 190, 191, 194, 197, 198 Gram-negative bacteria 140 Gram-positive bacteria 140 Gray, George 61 Group B strep 215 gut see colon; intestines ‘gut feelings’ 104 gut microbiota 2–4, 18, 21–4 and ageing 231, 235 American Gut Project 281–2 antibiotics and 157–8, 161 in appendix 14–16, 266 and autism 106, 165–6 bottle-feeding and 221–2 as cause of ill-health 236–7 in children 226–7 diet and 184–8 and digoxin 271 and drug outcomes 270–2 faecal transplants 245, 248–57, 258–62 and fibre 191–9, 202–3, 204, 263, 276, 282–4 and gastric bypasses 81–2 genes and 227 and infantile colic 216 and irritable bowel syndrome 63–6 and leaky gut 194–7 meat-eaters 191–2 and mental health conditions 99–100 and nutrition 180–2 and obesity 23–4, 66–72, 76 prebiotics 258 in pregnancy 229, 230 probiotics 237–44 raw-food diet 198–9 role in digestion 12–13, 70–1 transfer from mothers to babies 204–9, 213, 217 tribal societies 262–3, 282 Hai, Peggy Kan 233–5, 241, 245, 250, 251, 252 hairworms 84, 85 hand-washing 172–3, 175 happiness 103–5 Harvard University 179, 182, 198 Hawaii 233–5 Hawaiian bobtail squid 11 hay fever 38, 39, 46, 116, 117, 130, 166–7, 171, 242 healthy diet 183–4 heart disease: appendix and 16 as cause of death 268 diet and 183 digoxin 271 fibre and 199 heart attacks 50, 231 heart valve disease 161 lipopolysaccharide and 141 metabolic syndrome and 256, 257 obesity and 42, 47 statins 269 Helicobacter pylori 21, 74, 144 hepatitis A 119 herbivores 181, 192, 204, 263 herd immunity 30 herons 83 hibernation 61 high blood pressure 50, 231, 256 Hippocrates 61–2, 235 HIV 254 Hoffman, Dustin 87 holobiont 126 hologenome selection 126 home births 214 Hominidae 16 Homo sapiens 16 hookworms 118 hormones: acne 143 appetite control 67–8, 72–3, 80 contraceptives 102 in farming 272 and immune system 267 insulin 167, 256 in labour 220 leptin 67–8, 72–3, 78, 80, 196 menstrual cycle 229 sex hormones 51, 52 stress hormones 93 thyroid hormones 171 horses, rolling in dirt 176 hospitals, hygiene 31–4 houses, microbes in 228–9 Human Genome Project (HGP) 3–4, 7–10, 43–4, 279–80 Human Microbiome Project (HMP) 11, 18, 19–20, 22–3, 162 human papillomavirus (HPV) 144 Humphrys, John, The Great Food Gamble 272 Hungary 33 Huntington’s disease 44 hydrogen, in babies’ breath 216 hydrogen sulphide 248 hygiene 31–4, 168–72, 175–8, 214–15, 278–9 hygiene hypothesis, allergies 117–19, 121, 130–2, 145, 266 hyperphagia 55 idiopathic thrombocytopenia purpura 254 immune system 3, 114–46 and acne 144 and ageing 231 and allergies 39, 44–5, 116–21, 130–1 antibiotics and 37, 129–30 antibodies 30, 139, 231 antigens 132–3 appendix and 14–15, 16 and autism 106, 108 in babies 208–9, 217, 227 and the brain 103–4, 105 cell types 132–3 coeliac disease 139–40 evolution 126 and fat cells 78 fibre and 195–6 flu pandemic 48 germ-free mice 128 and gluten intolerance 202 and the gut 45 hygiene hypothesis 117–19, 121, 130–2, 145 inflammatory bowel diseases 144 IPEX syndrome 133 and leaky gut 137–42, 194–7 living without a microbiota 126–8 microbes and 121, 133–5 pheromones and 101, 102 probiotics and 242–3 targets 119–21 and twenty-first-century illnesses 51–2 vaccinations and 30 see also autoimmune diseases Imperial College, London 147 India 56–7, 173, 260 Indonesia 142 Industrial Revolution 221 infant mortality 222–3 infections, and allergies 116–19 infectious diseases 27–9, 43, 115, 118, 153–4 inflammation 145–6 and acne 144 and ageing 231 fibre and 196 leaky gut syndrome 142 and mental health conditions 105, 108 in obesity 79 in pregnancy 229 and twenty-first-century illnesses 243, 268 inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) 45, 63, 66 faecal transplants 251 gender differences 51 and gut microbiota 23–4, 144 incidence of 41, 42, 47, 49 influenza 27, 28, 48, 50, 129, 152, 167 insulin 38, 139, 269 faecal transplants and 256 insulin resistance 229, 256–7 lipopolysaccharide and 141 probiotics and 257–8 type 1 diabetes 39–40, 167 intestines 18–19, 22 appendix 13–16, 21, 203, 208, 266 caecum 13, 21, 45, 128 cholera 15, 27, 30, 34–5, 45–6, 135–7, 139 coeliac disease 41, 139–40 colorectal cancers 23–4, 144, 145, 258 connections to brain 92–3, 104–5, 106–7, 109–10 dysbiosis 64–6 germ-free mice 128 immune system and 45 leaky gut 137–42, 194–7, 200 mucus lining 79–80, 80, 129, 193, 283–4 necrotising enterocolitis 222 see also colon; diarrhoea; gut microbiota; inflammatory bowel disease; irritable bowel syndrome inulin 258 IPEX syndrome 133, 135 Iran 210 irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) 43, 45, 183 antibiotics and 64–5 emotions and 92–3 faecal transplants 251 gender differences 51 gluten-free diets 201 incidence of 42, 63 and mental health conditions 44 microbes and 63–6 post-infectious irritable bowel syndrome 62, 63 probiotics and 242 Italy 131, 150, 184, 185, 190, 191 Japan 142, 192, 247, 271 Jenner, Edward 25, 29 juices 198 Jumpertz, Reiner 70 Kanner, Leo 88, 89, 108–9 Kasthala, Gita 175–6 Khoruts, Alexander 248, 249, 259, 261–2 kidney cancer 145 kissing 102 kitchens, cleaning 169 Klebsiella 23 Knight, Rob 4, 213–14, 281–2 koalas 204, 217–18 Koch, Robert 34 Kolletschka, Jakob 33 Krau Wildlife Reserve, Malaysia 1–2 Kudzu bugs 205 labour see birth lactase 215–16 lactase persistence 201 lactate 217 lactic acid 217 lactic acid bacteria 206–8, 218–19, 222, 227, 229, 237 Lactobacillus 206–7, 213, 217, 219, 229, 239–40, 244, 257–9 Lactobacillus acidophilus 237 Lactobacillus bulgaricus 237 Lactobacillus johnsonii 208 Lactobacillus paracasei 239 Lactobacillus plantarum 101 Lactobacillus reuteri 161 Lactobacillus rhamnosus 239, 242 lactose 142, 200, 201–2, 207, 215–16, 218, 237 leaky gut walls 137–42, 194–7, 200 learning 108 leeches 181, 182 legumes, fibre content 276 Lemos de Goés, Adelir Carmen 209 lentils 198 leopards 115 leptin 67–8, 72–3, 78, 80, 196 leukaemia 223 Ley, Ruth 67–8, 186, 187, 230 life expectancy 28, 49, 237, 265–6, 268 light, bioluminescence 12 lime, chlorinated 33 lions 124 lipopolysaccharide (LPS) 79–80, 140–2, 187–8, 193, 194–5, 197, 284 Lister, Joseph 34, 36 lithium 98 liver cancer 144–5 lizards 245 London: cholera epidemic 34–5, 45–6, 135 Toxoplasma 96 Louisiana 46 low-carb diets 186, 187–8 low-fat diets 186 lungs 19 lupus 39, 41, 49, 50, 168 Lyman, Flo and Kay 108 lymph glands 45, 219 lymphoma 127 lysozyme 36 MacFabe, Derrick 106–7, 108, 109, 111, 112 McMaster University, Ontario 99 macrophages 132 Malawi 262–3, 282 Malaysia 1–2, 208 mammals 16, 122, 123–4, 204 manure, antibiotic contamination 164–5, 272 marmosets 77 Marseille 160–1 Marshall, Barry 74 marsupials 217–18 Massachusetts General Hospital for Children, Boston 40, 136–7, 200 mastoiditis 151, 153 Mazmanian, Sarkis 134 measles 27, 28, 31, 38, 119, 165, 266 meat 70–1, 181, 191–2 Medical Hypotheses 110 memory 108–9 memory B cells 132 meningitis 153 menstrual cycle 229 mental health conditions 42–3, 44 drug treatment 269 encephalitis lethargica 173–4 epidemiology 46 gastrointestinal symptoms 85–7, 106 gender differences 51 immune system and 105 lipopolysaccharide and 141 microbes and 24, 93–4, 97–9 probiotics and 238, 242 Streptococcus and 174–5 see also individual conditions mercury 263 metabolic syndrome 255–7, 258 metabolism 60, 229–30 metabolites 110, 111 Metchnikoff, Elie 180, 244 The Prolongation of Life 235–6, 237, 238 methicillin 154 metronidazole 129 Mexico 210 miasma theory 31–2, 34, 35 mice: antibiotics and 162–3 characteristic behaviours 99–100 diabetes in 267 faecal transplants 257 fibre in diet 193–4 genetically obese mice 67–9, 72–3 germ-free mice 17–18, 66–9, 128, 134, 230 microbial transplants 247 number of genes 7 ob/ob mice 67–9, 72–3, 194 probiotics and 242–4 microbes: and ageing 228, 231 and allergies 131–2 antibiotics and 129 antigens 132–3 and autism 90–2, 94–6, 106, 109–12 behaviour changes in host 84–5, 96–7, 112–13 in breast-milk 218–20, 222 and cancer 144–5 culturing 9 diversity 134, 282 DNA sequencing 4–5, 11 dysbiosis 64–6 evolution 11–12, 125–6 genes 279 in genetically obese mice 67–9 germ-free mice 17–18, 66–9, 128 germ theory of disease 34, 236 habitats in human body 18–23 in the home 228–9 hospital hygiene practices 31–4 immune system and 121, 133–5 kissing and 102 living without 126–8 and memory formation 109 and menstrual cycle 229 and mental health conditions 93–4, 97–9 in mouth 20–1 and neurotransmitters 104 in nostrils 21 Old Friends hypothesis 132, 145, 266 pheromones 100–2 Robogut 110, 111 on skin 19–20, 168–9 in stomach 21 and sweat 177 transfer from mothers to babies 122, 204–9, 212–14 transmission of 114–16 tree of life 16–17 in vagina 205–9, 212–14, 229 and vitamins 228 see also bacteria; gut microbiota; viruses Microbial Ecosystem Therapeutics 260 microbiome 8, 11, 227–9, 279, 280 Middle East 58 midwives 32–3 migraine 238 migrants, and twenty-first-century illnesses 50–1 migration, garden warblers 54–6 milk: antibiotics in 164 bottle-feeding 220–6, 273–5 breast-milk 216–20, 221, 222–6, 230–1, 274–5, 278, 285 cow’s milk 216, 221 lactobacilli and 207 lactose intolerance 200, 201 marsupials 218 milk banks 218–19 milk proteins 111 wet nursing 220–1 yogurt 206, 237 Millennials 224 Miller, Anne 149–50, 158 minerals 221, 227 Minnesota 170, 172 minocycline 168 Mississippi 46 mitochondria 123, 123 MMR vaccine 165 monkeys 16, 77 moorhens 124 Moraxella 21 mouth, microbes in 20–1 MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) 154, 171, 172, 175, 212 mucus lining, intestines 79–80, 80, 129, 193, 283–4 multiple sclerosis (MS) 38, 39, 49 antibiotics and 168 and bottle-feeding 223 in children 119 faecal transplants and 254 incidence of 41, 52, 158 probiotics and 242 racial differences 50 Mumbai 56, 61 mumps 165 Munich University’s Children’s Hospital 46 muscles, tetanus 91 mutations, genes 44 Mycobacterium 27 myositis 39 National Food Survey (UK) 188, 189 National Health Service (NHS) 138, 210, 211–12 National Institute of Health, Phoenix, Arizona 70 National Institutes for Health (US) 18 natural killer cells 219 natural selection 124–6, 206 Nature 179 Nauru 58 necrotising enterocolitis 222 necrotising fasciitis 20 Neolithic Revolution 184–5, 187, 200, 201 nerves 104–5 nervous system, multiple sclerosis 41 Netherlands 52, 255, 256–7 neuropsychiatric disorders see mental health conditions neurotransmitters 103, 104–5 New York City 96 New York University 162, 214 New Zealand 46 Nicholson, Jeremy 147, 148, 160, 161 Nieuwdorp, Max 255, 256–7 nitric oxide 177 nitrite 177 Nitrosomonas eutropha 178 Nobel Prizes 37, 74, 180, 235 nori 192 North America 50, 117, 214–15, 224–6 Northern Ireland 47 nostrils, microbes in 21 nut allergies 38, 39 nutrition see food ob/ob mice 67–9, 72–3, 194 obesity 38, 43, 44, 54–61 Akkermansia and 79–81 antibiotics and 147–9, 159–65 appetite control 67–8, 72–3, 80, 196 breast-feeding and 223–4 and Caesarean sections 212 and cancer 145 in childhood 49 in developing countries 47 and diabetes 256 diet and 183 difficulty in losing weight 59–60 faecal transplants and 255–7 and fall in calorific intake 189 fat cells 78–9 garden warblers 54–6 gastric bypasses 81–2 gender differences 51 and genetics 60 gut microbiota and 23–4, 66–72, 76 incidence of 41–2, 46, 52–3 as infectious disease 75–7 and leaky gut syndrome 140–1 and liver cancer 145 and low fibre intake 197 metabolic syndrome 255–7 racial differences 50 surgery for 61, 66 viruses and 57, 61, 74–8 Obesity Society 82 obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) 42, 44, 51, 98–9, 105, 172–3, 174, 212, 246 oestrogen 171 Old Friends hypothesis 132, 145, 266 oligofructose 193–4 oligosaccharides 216–18, 220, 221, 222, 226 omnivores 276 OpenBiome 253–4, 261–2 oranges 198 overweight 41–2, 58 Oxford University 36, 37 oxygen 9 oxytocin 104–5 Pacific islands 58 Pakistan 26, 131 palaeo-diet 263 pancreas 39, 40, 180, 242–3 panda, giant 181–2 Papua New Guinea 84, 142 parasites 27, 83–4, 96–7, 98, 118 Paris 96 Parker, Janet 25, 26 Parkinson’s disease 105, 173, 174, 175, 254 passwords, beneficial microbes 134–5 Pasteur, Louis 34, 236 pathogens 28–9 peanut allergy 39 pectin 192 penicillin 36–7, 150, 154, 158, 162–3, 182 penicillinase 154 Penicillium 36 Peptostreptococcaceae 222 pesticides 272 Petrof, Elaine 259–60 Peyer’s patches 128 phagocytes 120, 141 pharyngitis 152 pheromones 100–2, 177 Phipps, James 29 pigs 148 pinworms 118 plague 30 plant foods see fruit; vegetables plants, ecological succession 208 pneumonia 27, 153, 268 polio 27–8, 29, 31, 38, 266 Pollan, Michael 202 pollen 119 polysaccharides 181 polysaccharide A (PSA) 134–5 Porpyhra 192 potatoes 191 poverty 48 Prague 97 prebiotics 258 pregnancy 205 antibiotics in 163 gut microbiota 229–31 metabolic changes 229–30 probiotics in 239 toxoplasmosis 96 vaginal bacteria 207–8 preservatives, food 202 Prevotella 185, 191, 192, 194, 206, 213, 263 primates 16, 102 probiotics 237–44, 257–9 propionate 107–9, 195, 217 Propionibacterium 20, 21, 168–9, 213, 239 Propionibacterium acnes 143–4 proteins 7, 9, 180, 196–7 Proteobacteria 65, 226, 230 Pseudomonas 206, 213 psoriasis 23, 49 psychoanalysis 238 Puerto Rico 214 pulses, fibre content 276 Pyrenees 115 Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario 259 quorum sensing 136 rabbits 245 rabies 29–30, 84, 85 racial differences, twenty-first-century illnesses 50–1 Rain Man (film) 87 ram’s horn snails 83 rashes 155 rats 18, 84, 85, 96, 107–8, 185–6, 245 raw-food diet 198–9 RePOOPulate 260 reptiles, gut microbiota 205 respiratory tract infections 152, 153, 222 rheumatoid arthritis 39, 41, 223, 254 rice 198 rickets 221 Riley, Lee 165 Rio de Janeiro 209 Robogut 110, 111, 259 rodents 245 Roseburia intestinalis 197 Rosenberg, Eugene and Ilana 126 Rowen, Lee 7–8, 24 rubella 31, 165 Rush Children’s Hospital, Chicago 92 Russia 173 Rwanda 201 rye 139, 194, 199 sac-winged bats 100, 101 Salmonella 271 Sandler, Richard 92, 94, 95 sanitation 15, 35–6 Sardinia 52 savants, autistic 87, 108 Scandinavia 188 scarlet fever 27 scent see smells scent glands 177 schizophrenia 97–8, 105, 106, 108, 141, 246 Science 179 Scientific American magazine 97 scleroderma 50 scurvy 221 seaweed 192, 247 Second World War 37, 150, 158, 189 Semmelweis, Ignaz 32–3, 34, 215 sepsis 36 septicaemia 34 serotonin 103, 104–5 Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID) 127 sewage systems 15 sex, pheromones 100–2, 177 sex hormones 51, 52 sexually-transmitted diseases 28 Sharon, Gil 101 sheep 201, 204 Shigella 128 shingles 271 short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) 107–9, 195–6, 195, 197, 198, 217, 257 sinusitis 152, 157 skin 18, 23, 45 acne 23, 129, 141, 142–4, 168 hygiene 168–9 microbiota 19–20, 168–9, 213 pheromones 101–2 psoriasis 23, 49 rashes 155 sweat 177 washing 175, 177–8 see also eczema smallpox 25–7, 29, 30–1, 38, 266 smells: faeces 248 pheromones 100–2 Smith, Mark 252–3, 259, 261–2 smoking 145 snail, ram’s horn 83 Snow, John 35, 45–6 soaps 168–71, 172, 175, 177–8 social behaviour, autism 88 Soho, London 34–5, 45–6, 135 soil: ammonia-oxidising bacteria 176 antibiotic contamination 164–5 Somalia 25, 50–1 sore throats 152, 153, 173–4 South Africa 153–4 South America 47, 173, 214 South Pacific islands 58 Spain 151 sperm donors 260–1 spores, Clostridium difficile 234 squid, Hawaiian bobtail 11 Staphylococcus 20, 21, 36, 131, 172, 177, 213, 219 Staphylococcus aureus 154, 171, 172, 271 statins 269 steroids 116 stinkbugs 205 stomach 13 cancer 144 digestion 180 gastric bypasses 61, 66, 81–2 microbes in 21 ulcers 73–4, 144 stools see faeces Strachan, David 116–17, 118–19, 121, 131 Streptococcus 20, 150, 160, 172, 173–5, 206, 213, 215, 219, 229 Streptococcus pneumoniae 217 stress: irritable bowel syndrome 63, 92–3 leaky gut syndrome and 141 and stomach ulcers 73–4 stress hormones 93 strokes 50, 107, 183, 199, 256, 268 Stuebe, Alison 225 Stunkard, Dr Albert 59 Sudden Infant Death syndrome 222–3 Sudo, Nobuyuki 93 sugars 198 digestion 70, 180 falling consumption of 188–9 high-sugar diets 185–6, 192–3 and obesity 189–90 oligosaccharides 216 Sulawesi 142 superfoods 114 supermarkets 75, 159, 169, 182–3 surgery: antibiotic use 37 Caesarean sections 209–15, 220, 274 gastric bypasses 61, 66, 81–2 hygiene 34 Sutterella 282 sweat 101–2, 176–7 Sweden 51, 66–7, 131, 150, 157 Swiss mice 99 Switzerland 52 syphilis 27, 28, 158 T helper cells 118–19, 132 T regulatory cells (Tregs) 133–4, 144, 243 Tanzania 246 tapeworms 118 Tel Aviv University 101, 126 termites 181 testosterone 171, 267 tetanus 90–1 tetracycline antibiotics 168 throats, sore 152, 153, 173–4 thyroid hormones 171 ticks 1–2 tics, physical 282 toads 83–4 tonsillitis 223 Toronto 51 Tourette’s syndrome 42, 98–9, 175, 246 toxic megacolon 156, 245 Toxoplasma 84, 85, 96–7, 98–9, 112, 261 transplants, faecal 245, 248–57, 258–62 Transpoosion 245, 248 traveller’s diarrhoea 63–4 tree of life 16–17, 123–4 trematode worms 83–4 tribal societies: gut microbiota 262–3, 282 personal hygiene 175–6 triclosan 170–2 tryptophan 103, 105 tuberculosis 27, 29, 268 Turkey 97 Turnbaugh, Peter 68–70, 160, 182 Tutsi 201 twenty-first-century illnesses 37–43, 46–53, 266–9 antibiotics and 158–9 and Caesarean sections 212 diet and 183 dysbiosis 64–5 faecal transplants and 254 gender differences 267 inflammation 243, 268 see also allergies; autoimmune diseases; mental health conditions; obesity typhoid 27, 30 ulcerative colitis 42, 49, 144 ulcers, stomach 73–4, 144 United States of America: affluence and disease 47 antibacterial products 172 antibiotic use in livestock 147–8, 164, 165, 272 antibiotics 37, 150, 151, 152, 163, 215 breast-feeding 225–6 Caesarean sections 209–10 diabetes 52, 167 encephalitis lethargica 173 faecal transplants 252–4 fall in calorific intake 189 fibre consumption 197 gut microbiota 262–3 infant mortality 222–3 infectious diseases 27 irritable bowel syndrome 63 obesity 41–2, 46, 49, 58, 75, 81 supermarkets 183 vaccination schemes 31 University of Bern 101 University of Birmingham 25–6 University of Bristol 130 University of Colorado, Boulder 4, 213, 281–2 University of Gothenburg 66, 131 University of Guelph, Ontario 109, 111, 259 University of North Carolina School of Medicine 225 University of Western Ontario 106 University of Wisconsin 74–5 unsaturated fatty acids 188 upper respiratory tract infections (URI) 152, 153, 222 urinary tract 19 urinary tract infections 155, 157 urine, triclosan in 171 US Department of Agriculture (USDA) 189 US Navy 160 uterine cancer 145 vaccinations 25, 26–7, 29–31, 35, 91, 118, 165 vagina: microbes 19, 205–9, 212–14, 229 probiotic inserts 239 vaginal birth 209–12, 220, 274, 278 vagus nerve 91, 104–5 vampire bats 124–5, 181 vancomycin 91, 161 vegans 164 vegetables: antibiotic contamination 164–5, 272 digestion 70 fibre content 190–1, 276 Five-a-Day campaign 273 prebiotics 258 vegetarian diet 71, 192 Venezuela 262–3 Vetter, David 126–8, 181 Vibrio cholerae 135–7 Vienna General Hospital 32–3 viruses 8 antibiotics and 152 and autoimmune diseases 167 chicken disease 57, 61, 74–5, 76–7, 78 flu pandemic 48 menstrual cycle 229 and obesity 57, 61, 74–8 polio 27–8, 29, 31, 38, 266 rabies 29–30, 84, 85 smallpox 25–7, 29, 30–1, 38, 266 vitamins 16, 227–8 colon and 180–1 deficiencies 221 enzymes and 263 synthesis by bacteria 23 vitamin B12 23, 228 Vrieze, Anne 255, 256–7 VSL#3 242–4 Walkerton, Canada 62 wallabies 181 warblers, garden 54–6, 57, 73, 77, 78 Warren, Robin 74 washing 172–3, 175, 177–8 Washington University, St Louis 67, 247, 262 water birth 214 water supply: antibacterial products in 171, 172 cholera epidemic 34–5, 45–6, 135 chlorination 172 and irritable bowel syndrome 62 water-borne diseases 34–6 wealth, and twenty-first-century illnesses 46–8 weaning 226 weight gain: calories and 77–8 in pregnancy 230 see also obesity weight loss: dieting 59, 148–9, 184, 186–7, 197, 199 faecal transplants and 257 garden warblers 55–6 raw-food diet 199 Wellcome Collection, London 279 West Papua 176 Western diet 185–6 wet nursing 220–1 wheat 7, 111, 139, 194 wheat intolerance 38, 199–202 Whipple’s disease 85, 106, 107 white blood cells 45 Whitlock, David 176, 177–8 whooping cough 27 Whorwell, Peter 62–3, 252 Wold, Agnes 131–2, 134 women: acne 142–3 antibiotic use 150 breast-feeding 216–20, 221, 222–6, 230–1, 274–5, 278, 285 Caesarean births 209–15, 220, 274 consumption of fats 188 death in childbirth 32–3 lupus 168 menstrual cycle 229 obesity and cancer 145 pregnancy 229–30 Toxoplasma infection 96–7 transfer of microbes to babies 204–9, 212–14 and twenty-first-century illnesses 51–2, 267 vaginal births 209–12, 220, 274, 278 World Health Organisation (WHO) 25–6, 31, 211, 225, 239, 278, 285 The Worm, number of genes 7, 8 worms 83–4, 118 wounds 34, 36 Wrangham, Richard 198–9 xylan 191 Xylanibacter 185, 191 yeasts 8 yogurt 206, 237, 239–40, 244 Zobellia galactanivorans 192 zonula occludens toxin (Zot) 136–7, 139 zonulin 137, 139–40, 200 ABOUT THE AUTHOR ALANNA COLLEN is a science writer with a master’s degree in biology from Imperial College London and a PhD in evolutionary biology from University College London and the Zoological Society of London.

Page numbers in italic refer to the illustrations abscesses 37 Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam 255, 256–7 accidents, Toxoplasma infection and 97 acetate 107, 195, 217 acne 23, 129, 141, 142–4, 168 Actinobacteria 226, 230 adenoviruses 75, 76–7, 78 adipose cells see fat cells Adlerberth, Ingegerd 131 adrenalin 104–5 affluence, and twenty-first-century illnesses 46–8 Africa: asthma 50 births 214 diet and gut microbiota 184, 185, 262–3 Ebola epidemic 115 garden warblers 55 personal hygiene 176 age, and twenty-first-century illnesses 48–50 ageing 228, 231, 235, 268 agriculture: antibiotic use 147–8, 160–4, 165, 272 Neolithic Revolution 184–5, 201 Akkermansia 283–4 Akkermansia muciniphila 79–81, 193–4, 258 Alabama 46 alcohol hand-rubs 175 Alexander, Albert 37 Aliivibrio fischeri 12 Allen-Vercoe, Emma 109–10, 111, 112, 259–60, 261–2 allergies 24, 38–9, 43, 44, 48 affluence and 46–7 after Caesarean birth 212 antibacterial products and 171 antibiotics and 130, 166–7 antihistamines 39, 116, 269 bottle-feeding and 223 in developing countries 47 family size and 117, 118 gender differences 51, 52 hygiene hypothesis 117–19, 121, 130–2, 145 immune system and 44–5, 116–21, 130–1 increase in incidence 52, 116 and infections 116–19 microbes and 131–2 probiotics and 242 racial differences 50 Alm, Eric 253 Alps 115 alternative medicine 137–9 Alvarez, Walter 238 Amazon rainforest 262, 282 American Gut Project (AGP) 4–5, 281–2 Amerindians 262–3 amino acids 70, 71, 180, 271 ammonia 176–7 ammonia-oxidising bacteria (AOBs) 176–8 anaemia 221 anaerobic bacteria 95 anaphylactic attacks 38 androgens 143 Animalia 16, 17 animals: allergies to 119 antibiotics as growth promoters 147–8, 160–4, 272 coprophagy 245–8 Neolithic Revolution 184–5, 201 transmission of microbes 115 see also individual types of animal anthrax 115 antibacterial products 169–72, 175, 214–15 antibiotics 2, 147–68, 276–7, 281, 285 and acne 143 and allergies 130, 166–7 antibiotic resistance 152, 153, 154–5, 156 and autism 86, 90–2, 94–5, 106–7, 111, 165–6 and autoimmune diseases 167–8 benefits of 168 and birth 163, 215 broad-spectrum antibiotics 156, 270 and Clostridium difficile 157, 234, 250 development of 36–7 and diarrhoea 155, 157, 241–2 effects on microbiota 129, 157–8, 161 as growth promoters for animals 147–8, 160–4, 272 harmful side-effects 5–6, 155–6, 269 and immune system 129–30 and irritable bowel syndrome 64–5 lactobacilli and 206–7 and life expectancy 28 and obesity 147–9, 159–65 residues in vegetables 164–5 and stomach ulcers 74 and twenty-first-century illnesses 158–9 unnecessary prescriptions 152–3, 269–70 antibodies 30, 139, 231 antidepressants 269 antigens 132–3 antihistamines 39, 116, 269 ants 84 anxiety disorders 42, 51, 99, 175 AOBiome 176, 177–8 apes 16 apocrine glands 177 appendicitis 14, 15–16, 43, 223, 266 appendix 13–16, 21, 45, 203, 208, 266 appetite control 67–8, 72–3, 80, 196 arabinoxylan 194 Arabs 46 archaea 8 Argentina 210 arginine 271 arthritis 183, 196 asbestos 170 Asia 47, 214 Asperger syndrome 87 asthma 44, 49 antibiotics and 130, 166–7 bottle-feeding and 223 fibre and 199 immune system and 116, 196 incidence 38, 39, 47, 52 racial differences 50 wealth and 47 Atkinson, Richard 74–5, 77 attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) 42, 98–9, 105, 108, 175 aureomycin 160 Australia: acne 142 birth 214–15 encephalitis lethargica 173 faecal transplants 250–1, 259 fruit and vegetable consumption 273 racial differences in diseases 50 sugar consumption 188, 189 twenty-first-century illnesses 46 autism 38, 43, 44, 49, 85–96 after Caesarean sections 212 antibiotics and 86, 90–2, 94–5, 106–7, 111, 165–6 autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) 87–8 behaviour problems 88, 108–9 and coprophagy 246 and ear infections 166 faecal transplants and 254–5 gastrointestinal symptoms 45, 85–7, 90 gender differences 51, 89 genetics and 89 immune system and 106, 108 incidence of 42, 46, 53, 88–9 lipopolysaccharide and 141 microbes and 90–2, 94–6, 109–12, 165–6 probiotics and 242 propionate and 107–9 racial differences 50–1 savants 87, 108 symptoms 87–8, 282 autoimmune diseases 24, 38, 39–41, 43 affluence and 47 and antibiotics 167–8 appendix and 16 and Caesarean sections 212 in childhood 49 in developing countries 47 faecal transplants and 254 gender differences 51, 52, 267 immune system and 44–5 incidence of 46 IPEX syndrome 133 probiotics and 242 racial differences 50 T helper cells and 119 see also individual diseases autointoxication 236–8 autopsies 33 babies 273–4 antibiotics 152–3, 158, 159–60, 161–2 bottle-feeding 220–6, 273–5 breast-feeding 216–20, 221, 222–6, 230–1, 274–5, 278, 285 Caesarean births 209–15, 220, 274, 278 caul births 214 colic 215–16 ear infections 151 gut microbiota 131, 217 immune system 208–9, 217, 227 infant mortality 222–3 probiotics and 242 transfer of microbes to 204–9, 212–14 vaginal delivery 209–12, 220, 274, 278 water birth 214 weaning 226 wet nursing 220–1 Bäckhed, Fredrik 66–7, 71, 147, 160 bacteria: alcohol hand-rubs 175 ammonia-oxidising bacteria 176–8 anaerobic bacteria 95 antibacterial products 169–72 antibiotic resistance 152, 153, 154–5, 156 collateral damage from antibiotics 155–6, 157 colony-forming units 244 DNA sequencing 17 lipopolysaccharide 140 and mitochondria 123, 123 prebiotics 258 probiotics 237–44 quorum sensing 136 and stomach ulcers 74 see also gut microbiota; microbes and individual types of bacteria bacteriocins 161, 206–7, 208 bacteriocytes 205 bacteriotherapy 245, 248 Bacteroides 23, 157, 194 Bacteroides fragilis 134–5 Bacteroides plebeius 192 Bacteroidetes 68–9, 70, 81, 185, 186, 187, 191, 226, 282 BALB mice 99 barley 139, 199 basal ganglia 174–5 bats 1–2, 100, 115, 124–5, 181, 182, 236 beans, fibre content 190, 191 Bedouin 201 Bedson, Henry 26 bees 124 behaviour: in autism 88, 108–9 changed by microbes 84–5, 96–7, 112–13 neurotransmitters 103, 104–5 propionate and 107–9 Bengmark, Stig 46 Bifidobacterium 193–4, 196–7, 217, 226, 239, 240, 258, 284 Bifidobacterium infantis 93 bile 145, 263 bioluminescence 12 bipolar disorder 105 birds 54–6, 205 birth 278 antibiotics in 163, 215 Caesarean section 209–15, 220, 274 caul births 214 childbed fever 32–3 home births 214 hormones 220 hygiene 214–15 transfer of microbes to babies 205–7, 212–13 vaginal deliveries 209–12, 220, 274, 278 water birth 214 bison 125–6 Blaser, Martin 162, 163, 182 blood 181 blood pressure 199, 231, 256 blood sugar levels 256 blood transfusions 249, 253, 254 bobcats 84, 97 Body Mass Index (BMI) 41, 69, 79, 161, 188, 193, 197 body odour 175–7 Bolte, Andrew 86–7, 88, 89–92, 94–6, 110, 111, 112, 165–6 Bolte, Ellen 86–7, 88, 89–92, 94–6, 106, 110–11, 112, 165–6 Bolte, Erin 86, 110, 111–12 Borody, Tom 250–2, 254–5, 259 bottle-feeding 220–6, 273–5 Boulpon, Burkina Faso 184, 185, 190 brain: connections to gut 92–3, 104–5, 106–7, 109–10 development of 93–4 encephalitis lethargica 173–4 immune system 103–4, 105 inflammation 108 memories 108–9 microbes and 98–9 neurotransmitters 103, 104–5 obsessive-compulsive disorder 172–3, 174 propionate and 107–9 strokes 50, 107, 183, 199, 256, 268 synapses 120 tetanus 91 Whipple’s disease 85 see also mental health conditions Brand-Miller, Jennie 215–16 Brazil 46, 47, 209, 212 bread 198, 199–200, 202 breast cancer 44, 145 breast-feeding 216–20, 221, 222–6, 230–1, 274–5, 278, 285 Britain: antibiotic use 130, 150–1 breast-feeding 225 Caesarean sections 210, 211–12 Clostridium difficile 156 consumption of fats and sugar 188 diabetes in children 40–1 fall in calorific intake 189 fruit and vegetable consumption 190–1, 273 gut microbes in babies 131 obesity 42, 58 broccoli 198 bronchitis 152 ‘Bubble Boy’ 126–8, 181 Burgess, James 253 Burkina Faso 184, 185, 190, 191, 263 Butler, Chris 153–4, 155 butyrate 107, 195, 196–7, 217, 257, 284 caecum 13, 21, 45, 128 Caesarean birth 209–15, 220, 274 caffeine 73, 74 cakes 198 California Institute of Technology 134 calories: calculating contents of foods 69–70 dieting 149, 186–7 differences in weight gain 77–8 fall in consumption of 189 microbes and extraction of 67, 70–2 and obesity 56–7, 61 Campylobacter jejuni 65 Canada 46, 47, 51, 62, 99, 106, 173, 259–60 cancer: ageing and 49 blood cancer 16 bottle-feeding and 223 breast cancer 44 as cause of death 268 cervical cancer 144 chemotherapy 270 colon cancer 23–4, 144, 145, 258 diet and 183 immune system and 120–1 infections and 144 liver cancer 144–5 lymphoma 127 metabolic syndrome and 256 microbes and 144–5 obesity and 42, 50, 145 prebiotics and 258 shingles and 271 stomach cancer 144 Cani, Patrice 78–9, 80–1, 193–4, 197 car accidents 97 carbohydrates: calorie content 69 dieting 185–8 digestion of 180 effects of 198 fibre 192 oligosaccharides 216–18 types of 197–8 carbolic acid 34, 36 Carmody, Rachel 179–80, 182, 198–9 carnivores 181–2, 192, 203, 263 casein 111, 200 cats 96 cattle 12–13, 181, 192, 201, 204, 272 caul births 214 cells, mitochondria 123, 123 cellulose 191, 192 centenarians 265 Centers for Disease Control (CDC) 88–9, 152, 212 Central America 100 Centre for Digestive Diseases, Sydney 250–2, 254 cervical cancer 144 Chain, Sir Ernst Boris 37 Charles University, Prague 97 cheese 159 cheetahs 124 chest infections 153 chickens: antibiotic treatment 147–8, 165 virus disease 57, 61, 74–5, 76–7, 78 Chida, Yoichi 93 childbed fever 32–3, 34 childbirth see birth children: allergies 38–9, 116–17 antibiotic use 151, 161–2, 165–6 autism 88–9, 165–6 brain development 93–4 death rates 28, 31 ear infections 86, 87, 90, 94, 151, 152, 153, 166, 222 fat intake 190 gut microbiota 226–7 hygiene 278–9 infectious diseases 31 obesity 58, 223–4 twenty-first-century illnesses 49 see also babies Children of the 90s project 130 chimpanzees 102, 245–7 China 47, 209, 249–50 chlorinated lime 33 chlorinated water 172 chlorine 35–6, 62 chloroform 172 cholera 15, 27, 30, 34–5, 45–6, 135–7, 139 Cholera Auto-Inducer 1 (CAI–1) 136 cholesterol 194, 229, 231, 256 Church, Andrew 173–4 ciprofloxacin 157–8 cleaning products 169–72, 175, 214–15 clindamycin 157 Clinton, Bill 10 Clostridium 96, 107, 145 Clostridium bolteae 106 Clostridium difficile 90, 271 antibiotics and 156–7, 234–5, 241, 250 in babies’ gut microbiota 213 bottle-feeding and 222 deaths from 156, 245 faecal transplants 249, 250, 251, 252–3, 259, 260 Lactobacillus and 206 symptoms 156 Clostridium tetani 90–2, 94, 95, 96, 110–11 clothing 176 cockroaches 204–5 coeliac disease 39, 41, 139–40, 183, 200, 202, 212 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, New York State 7, 24 colds 51, 129–30, 152, 167 colic, infantile 215–16 colitis, ulcerative 42, 49, 144 colon: autointoxication 236–8 colon cancer 23–4, 144, 145, 258 colonic irrigation 237 digestion 180–1 toxic megacolon 156, 245 see also gut microbiota; inflammatory bowel disease; intestines; irritable bowel syndrome colony-forming units (CFUs), bacteria 244 colostrum 217, 219, 220 constipation 62–3, 65, 238, 251, 254 contraceptives 102 cooking food 199 coprophagy 245–8 Cordyceps fungi 84 Cornell University 230 Corynebacterium 20, 21, 168–9, 177, 213 cough, sudden-onset 155 cowpox 27, 29 cows 12–13, 181, 192, 201, 204, 272 cow’s milk 216, 221 Crapsule 259 Crohn’s disease 42, 49, 52, 144 Cuba 210 Cyanobacteria 65 cytokines 48, 105, 106, 141 D-Day landings (1944) 37, 150, 158 dairy produce 200, 201 Dale, Russell 173–4 dander 119 Danish National Birth Cohort 161–2 Darwin, Charles 280 The Descent of Man 13, 14 The Expression of Emotions in Man and Animals 92 On the Origin of Species 124, 279 Dawkins, Richard, The Selfish Gene 125, 126 death 235–6 babies and children 28, 31, 222–3 causes of 268 Clostridium difficile 245 diarrhoea and 15 dementia 105 dendritic cells 219 Denmark 52, 161–2, 167–8 deodorants 175, 177, 178 deoxycholic acid (DCA) 145 depression 42, 45, 51, 65, 98, 103–4, 105, 141 dermatitis 23 developing countries: antibiotic use 153–4 twenty-first-century illnesses 53 Dhurandhar, Nikhil 56–7, 61, 74–5, 76–7, 82, 149 diabetes 38, 44, 139, 269 and antibiotics 167–8 bottle-feeding and 223, 224 breast-feeding and 231 and Caesarean sections 212 in childhood 4, 119 diet and 183 faecal transplants 255 gender differences 267 incidence of 39, 40–1, 47, 52, 158 leaky guts and 140 lipopolysaccharide and 141 metabolic syndrome 256–7 obesity and 42, 50, 256 probiotics and 242–3, 257–8 racial differences 50 symptoms 39–40 diarrhoea: antibiotics and 155, 157, 241–2 and autism 45, 85–7, 90 as cause of death 15, 27, 268 cholera 34–5, 135–7 Clostridium difficile 156, 222, 234–5, 241 and coprophagy 246 faecal transplants 250–1, 260 irritable bowel syndrome 62–5 probiotics and 241–2 diet see food dieting 59, 148–9, 184, 186–7, 197, 199 digestive system 180 see also colon; gut microbiota; intestines digoxin 271 diphtheria 27, 28 diseases: antibodies 30, 139, 231 diet and 183 epidemiology 35, 45–6 genes and 10, 43–4, 268 germ theory 34, 236 infectious diseases 27–9, 43, 115, 118, 153–4 obesity as infectious disease 75–7 pathogens 28–9 transmission of microbes 114–16 vaccinations 25, 26–7, 29–31, 35, 91, 118, 165 water-borne diseases 34–6 see also antibiotics and individual diseases DNA: and cancer 120–1, 144, 145 DNA sequencing 4, 9–11, 16–17, 65 human genome 279–80 doctors: antibiotic prescriptions 152–3, 277 hospital hygiene practices 31–4 Dodd, Diane 100–1 dogs 84, 85, 124 Dominguez-Bello, Maria Gloria 214, 278, 285 Dominican Republic 210 donors: faecal transplants 261, 262 sperm donors 260–1 dopamine 104–5 drugs: gut microbiota and 270–2 see also antibiotics dummies 151 dysbiosis 64–6 dysentery 15, 27 E. coli 62, 239, 254 ear infections 86, 87, 90, 94, 151, 152, 153, 166, 222 East Africa 176 Eastern Europe 47 Ebola 115 eccrine glands 177 ecological succession 208 eczema 38, 49 antibiotics and 130, 166–7 bottle-feeding and 223 incidence 39, 47, 52 prebiotics and 258 probiotics and 242 Eggerthella lenta 271 Egypt 201 Eiseman, Ben 251 elephants 245 Elizabeth II, Queen of England 265 emotions, and irritable bowel syndrome 92–3 encephalitis lethargica 173–4 energy: in food 69–72 mitochondria 123 storage in body 77–8 enterobacteria 131 Enterococcus 219 environment, and twenty-first-century illnesses 44 enzymes 12–13, 180, 182, 191, 192, 263 epidemiology 35, 45–6 epinephrine 104–5 Epstein-Barr virus 127 Eubacterium rectale 197 Eukarya 16 Europe: acne 142 antibiotic use 150, 163–4, 272 birth 214–15 breast-feeding 224 encephalitis lethargica 173 fat consumption 188 hygiene hypothesis 117 racial differences in diseases 50 see also individual countries evolution 11–12, 44, 84–5, 109, 124–6 fabrics, clothing 176 Faecalibacterium 284 Faecalibacterium prausnitzii 197 faeces: and birth 206, 207 coprophagy 245–7 DNA sequencing microbes in 23 faecal transplants 245, 248–57, 258–62 see also gut microbiota families, microbiotas 228 farming see agriculture Fasano, Alessio 136–7, 139–40, 200 fat cells: appetite control 72, 73 fibre and 196 lipopolysaccharide and 141 in obese people 78–9, 141 in pregnancy 230 storage of fat 72 FATLOSE (Faecal Administration To LOSE insulin resistance) 256–7 fats: calorie content 69, 77–8 consumption of 188, 189–90 dieting 186–8 digestion of 71, 180 high-fat diets 192–3, 194 fatty acids 180, 188 fibre: and Akkermansia 81, 193–4 and appendicitis 15 and butyrate 196–7 consumption of 190–1 in faeces 23 Five-a-Day campaign 273 and gut microbiota 191–9, 202–3, 204, 263, 276, 282–4 and obesity 192–5, 197 prebiotics 258 wheat and gluten intolerance 199–202 Finegold, Sydney 95–6, 106–7, 109 Firmicutes 68–9, 70, 81, 161, 185, 186, 187, 191, 226, 282 First World War 28, 36 fish, gut microbiota 205 Five-a-Day campaign 273 Fleming, Sir Alexander 36, 37, 154, 156 flies, fruit 100–1 Florence 184, 190, 191 Florey, Ethel 37 Florey, Howard 36–7 flour, fibre content 198 flu 27, 28, 48, 50, 129, 152, 167 folic acid 227–8 food 179–203, 272–3 and ageing 231 allergies and intolerances 38, 47, 49, 199–202 antibiotic residues in 164–5 calorie content 69–72 consumption of fats 188 cooking 199 digestion of 23 fibre content 190–9, 202–3, 273, 276, 282–4 and gut microbiota 184–8 healthy diet 183–4 Neolithic Revolution 184–5 packaged foods 182–3, 202 preservatives 202 sugar consumption 188–9 weaning babies 226 Food and Drug Administration (FDA) 172, 252, 272 food poisoning 15, 63–4, 65, 258 food supplements, prebiotics 258 formula milk 220–6 France 115, 160–1, 211 free-from foods 200 free will 112 Freud, Sigmund 98, 238 frogs 83–4, 124 fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS) 193–4, 258 fructose 180, 188 fruit 198, 273, 276 fruit flies 100–1 fungi 8, 84 galacto-oligosaccharides 258 galactose 207, 216 gangrene 34 garden warblers 54–6, 57, 73, 77, 78 gastric bypasses 81–2 gastritis 74 gastroenteritis 15, 16, 62, 63–4, 65, 167, 172, 222 Gattaca (film) 280 Ge Hong, Handbook of Emergency Medicine 249–50 gender differences: autism 51, 89 Toxoplasma infection 96–7 twenty-first-century illnesses 51–2, 267 Generation X 224 genes: appetite control 67–8 and autism 89 cholera bacteria 136–7 coeliac disease 139–40 faecal transplants 261 and gut microbiota 227 human genome 3–4, 7–10, 43–4, 279–80 in human microbiome 8, 11, 279 and lactose intolerance 201 and leaky gut 196–7 mutations 44 natural selection 125, 126 and obesity 60 and pheromones 102 and predisposition to disease 10, 43–4, 268 sperm donors 260–1 and vitamins 228 and weight control 71–2 genome-wide association studies (GWAS) 268 gentamycin 161 George V, King of England 265 germ-free mice 17–18, 66–9, 128, 134, 230 germ theory of disease 34, 236 Germany 46–7 giardiasis 15, 27 glucose 39–40, 180, 207, 216, 229, 256, 257 gluten 42, 111, 139–40, 142, 199–202 glycerols 180 gnotobiotic mice 17 goats 115, 201 Gombe Stream National Park, Tanzania 246 gonorrhoea 215 Goodall, Jane 246 Gordon, Jeffrey 18, 24, 67, 247, 262 GPR43 (G-Protein-coupled Receptor 43) 195–6, 195 grains 190, 191, 194, 197, 198 Gram-negative bacteria 140 Gram-positive bacteria 140 Gray, George 61 Group B strep 215 gut see colon; intestines ‘gut feelings’ 104 gut microbiota 2–4, 18, 21–4 and ageing 231, 235 American Gut Project 281–2 antibiotics and 157–8, 161 in appendix 14–16, 266 and autism 106, 165–6 bottle-feeding and 221–2 as cause of ill-health 236–7 in children 226–7 diet and 184–8 and digoxin 271 and drug outcomes 270–2 faecal transplants 245, 248–57, 258–62 and fibre 191–9, 202–3, 204, 263, 276, 282–4 and gastric bypasses 81–2 genes and 227 and infantile colic 216 and irritable bowel syndrome 63–6 and leaky gut 194–7 meat-eaters 191–2 and mental health conditions 99–100 and nutrition 180–2 and obesity 23–4, 66–72, 76 prebiotics 258 in pregnancy 229, 230 probiotics 237–44 raw-food diet 198–9 role in digestion 12–13, 70–1 transfer from mothers to babies 204–9, 213, 217 tribal societies 262–3, 282 Hai, Peggy Kan 233–5, 241, 245, 250, 251, 252 hairworms 84, 85 hand-washing 172–3, 175 happiness 103–5 Harvard University 179, 182, 198 Hawaii 233–5 Hawaiian bobtail squid 11 hay fever 38, 39, 46, 116, 117, 130, 166–7, 171, 242 healthy diet 183–4 heart disease: appendix and 16 as cause of death 268 diet and 183 digoxin 271 fibre and 199 heart attacks 50, 231 heart valve disease 161 lipopolysaccharide and 141 metabolic syndrome and 256, 257 obesity and 42, 47 statins 269 Helicobacter pylori 21, 74, 144 hepatitis A 119 herbivores 181, 192, 204, 263 herd immunity 30 herons 83 hibernation 61 high blood pressure 50, 231, 256 Hippocrates 61–2, 235 HIV 254 Hoffman, Dustin 87 holobiont 126 hologenome selection 126 home births 214 Hominidae 16 Homo sapiens 16 hookworms 118 hormones: acne 143 appetite control 67–8, 72–3, 80 contraceptives 102 in farming 272 and immune system 267 insulin 167, 256 in labour 220 leptin 67–8, 72–3, 78, 80, 196 menstrual cycle 229 sex hormones 51, 52 stress hormones 93 thyroid hormones 171 horses, rolling in dirt 176 hospitals, hygiene 31–4 houses, microbes in 228–9 Human Genome Project (HGP) 3–4, 7–10, 43–4, 279–80 Human Microbiome Project (HMP) 11, 18, 19–20, 22–3, 162 human papillomavirus (HPV) 144 Humphrys, John, The Great Food Gamble 272 Hungary 33 Huntington’s disease 44 hydrogen, in babies’ breath 216 hydrogen sulphide 248 hygiene 31–4, 168–72, 175–8, 214–15, 278–9 hygiene hypothesis, allergies 117–19, 121, 130–2, 145, 266 hyperphagia 55 idiopathic thrombocytopenia purpura 254 immune system 3, 114–46 and acne 144 and ageing 231 and allergies 39, 44–5, 116–21, 130–1 antibiotics and 37, 129–30 antibodies 30, 139, 231 antigens 132–3 appendix and 14–15, 16 and autism 106, 108 in babies 208–9, 217, 227 and the brain 103–4, 105 cell types 132–3 coeliac disease 139–40 evolution 126 and fat cells 78 fibre and 195–6 flu pandemic 48 germ-free mice 128 and gluten intolerance 202 and the gut 45 hygiene hypothesis 117–19, 121, 130–2, 145 inflammatory bowel diseases 144 IPEX syndrome 133 and leaky gut 137–42, 194–7 living without a microbiota 126–8 microbes and 121, 133–5 pheromones and 101, 102 probiotics and 242–3 targets 119–21 and twenty-first-century illnesses 51–2 vaccinations and 30 see also autoimmune diseases Imperial College, London 147 India 56–7, 173, 260 Indonesia 142 Industrial Revolution 221 infant mortality 222–3 infections, and allergies 116–19 infectious diseases 27–9, 43, 115, 118, 153–4 inflammation 145–6 and acne 144 and ageing 231 fibre and 196 leaky gut syndrome 142 and mental health conditions 105, 108 in obesity 79 in pregnancy 229 and twenty-first-century illnesses 243, 268 inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) 45, 63, 66 faecal transplants 251 gender differences 51 and gut microbiota 23–4, 144 incidence of 41, 42, 47, 49 influenza 27, 28, 48, 50, 129, 152, 167 insulin 38, 139, 269 faecal transplants and 256 insulin resistance 229, 256–7 lipopolysaccharide and 141 probiotics and 257–8 type 1 diabetes 39–40, 167 intestines 18–19, 22 appendix 13–16, 21, 203, 208, 266 caecum 13, 21, 45, 128 cholera 15, 27, 30, 34–5, 45–6, 135–7, 139 coeliac disease 41, 139–40 colorectal cancers 23–4, 144, 145, 258 connections to brain 92–3, 104–5, 106–7, 109–10 dysbiosis 64–6 germ-free mice 128 immune system and 45 leaky gut 137–42, 194–7, 200 mucus lining 79–80, 80, 129, 193, 283–4 necrotising enterocolitis 222 see also colon; diarrhoea; gut microbiota; inflammatory bowel disease; irritable bowel syndrome inulin 258 IPEX syndrome 133, 135 Iran 210 irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) 43, 45, 183 antibiotics and 64–5 emotions and 92–3 faecal transplants 251 gender differences 51 gluten-free diets 201 incidence of 42, 63 and mental health conditions 44 microbes and 63–6 post-infectious irritable bowel syndrome 62, 63 probiotics and 242 Italy 131, 150, 184, 185, 190, 191 Japan 142, 192, 247, 271 Jenner, Edward 25, 29 juices 198 Jumpertz, Reiner 70 Kanner, Leo 88, 89, 108–9 Kasthala, Gita 175–6 Khoruts, Alexander 248, 249, 259, 261–2 kidney cancer 145 kissing 102 kitchens, cleaning 169 Klebsiella 23 Knight, Rob 4, 213–14, 281–2 koalas 204, 217–18 Koch, Robert 34 Kolletschka, Jakob 33 Krau Wildlife Reserve, Malaysia 1–2 Kudzu bugs 205 labour see birth lactase 215–16 lactase persistence 201 lactate 217 lactic acid 217 lactic acid bacteria 206–8, 218–19, 222, 227, 229, 237 Lactobacillus 206–7, 213, 217, 219, 229, 239–40, 244, 257–9 Lactobacillus acidophilus 237 Lactobacillus bulgaricus 237 Lactobacillus johnsonii 208 Lactobacillus paracasei 239 Lactobacillus plantarum 101 Lactobacillus reuteri 161 Lactobacillus rhamnosus 239, 242 lactose 142, 200, 201–2, 207, 215–16, 218, 237 leaky gut walls 137–42, 194–7, 200 learning 108 leeches 181, 182 legumes, fibre content 276 Lemos de Goés, Adelir Carmen 209 lentils 198 leopards 115 leptin 67–8, 72–3, 78, 80, 196 leukaemia 223 Ley, Ruth 67–8, 186, 187, 230 life expectancy 28, 49, 237, 265–6, 268 light, bioluminescence 12 lime, chlorinated 33 lions 124 lipopolysaccharide (LPS) 79–80, 140–2, 187–8, 193, 194–5, 197, 284 Lister, Joseph 34, 36 lithium 98 liver cancer 144–5 lizards 245 London: cholera epidemic 34–5, 45–6, 135 Toxoplasma 96 Louisiana 46 low-carb diets 186, 187–8 low-fat diets 186 lungs 19 lupus 39, 41, 49, 50, 168 Lyman, Flo and Kay 108 lymph glands 45, 219 lymphoma 127 lysozyme 36 MacFabe, Derrick 106–7, 108, 109, 111, 112 McMaster University, Ontario 99 macrophages 132 Malawi 262–3, 282 Malaysia 1–2, 208 mammals 16, 122, 123–4, 204 manure, antibiotic contamination 164–5, 272 marmosets 77 Marseille 160–1 Marshall, Barry 74 marsupials 217–18 Massachusetts General Hospital for Children, Boston 40, 136–7, 200 mastoiditis 151, 153 Mazmanian, Sarkis 134 measles 27, 28, 31, 38, 119, 165, 266 meat 70–1, 181, 191–2 Medical Hypotheses 110 memory 108–9 memory B cells 132 meningitis 153 menstrual cycle 229 mental health conditions 42–3, 44 drug treatment 269 encephalitis lethargica 173–4 epidemiology 46 gastrointestinal symptoms 85–7, 106 gender differences 51 immune system and 105 lipopolysaccharide and 141 microbes and 24, 93–4, 97–9 probiotics and 238, 242 Streptococcus and 174–5 see also individual conditions mercury 263 metabolic syndrome 255–7, 258 metabolism 60, 229–30 metabolites 110, 111 Metchnikoff, Elie 180, 244 The Prolongation of Life 235–6, 237, 238 methicillin 154 metronidazole 129 Mexico 210 miasma theory 31–2, 34, 35 mice: antibiotics and 162–3 characteristic behaviours 99–100 diabetes in 267 faecal transplants 257 fibre in diet 193–4 genetically obese mice 67–9, 72–3 germ-free mice 17–18, 66–9, 128, 134, 230 microbial transplants 247 number of genes 7 ob/ob mice 67–9, 72–3, 194 probiotics and 242–4 microbes: and ageing 228, 231 and allergies 131–2 antibiotics and 129 antigens 132–3 and autism 90–2, 94–6, 106, 109–12 behaviour changes in host 84–5, 96–7, 112–13 in breast-milk 218–20, 222 and cancer 144–5 culturing 9 diversity 134, 282 DNA sequencing 4–5, 11 dysbiosis 64–6 evolution 11–12, 125–6 genes 279 in genetically obese mice 67–9 germ-free mice 17–18, 66–9, 128 germ theory of disease 34, 236 habitats in human body 18–23 in the home 228–9 hospital hygiene practices 31–4 immune system and 121, 133–5 kissing and 102 living without 126–8 and memory formation 109 and menstrual cycle 229 and mental health conditions 93–4, 97–9 in mouth 20–1 and neurotransmitters 104 in nostrils 21 Old Friends hypothesis 132, 145, 266 pheromones 100–2 Robogut 110, 111 on skin 19–20, 168–9 in stomach 21 and sweat 177 transfer from mothers to babies 122, 204–9, 212–14 transmission of 114–16 tree of life 16–17 in vagina 205–9, 212–14, 229 and vitamins 228 see also bacteria; gut microbiota; viruses Microbial Ecosystem Therapeutics 260 microbiome 8, 11, 227–9, 279, 280 Middle East 58 midwives 32–3 migraine 238 migrants, and twenty-first-century illnesses 50–1 migration, garden warblers 54–6 milk: antibiotics in 164 bottle-feeding 220–6, 273–5 breast-milk 216–20, 221, 222–6, 230–1, 274–5, 278, 285 cow’s milk 216, 221 lactobacilli and 207 lactose intolerance 200, 201 marsupials 218 milk banks 218–19 milk proteins 111 wet nursing 220–1 yogurt 206, 237 Millennials 224 Miller, Anne 149–50, 158 minerals 221, 227 Minnesota 170, 172 minocycline 168 Mississippi 46 mitochondria 123, 123 MMR vaccine 165 monkeys 16, 77 moorhens 124 Moraxella 21 mouth, microbes in 20–1 MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) 154, 171, 172, 175, 212 mucus lining, intestines 79–80, 80, 129, 193, 283–4 multiple sclerosis (MS) 38, 39, 49 antibiotics and 168 and bottle-feeding 223 in children 119 faecal transplants and 254 incidence of 41, 52, 158 probiotics and 242 racial differences 50 Mumbai 56, 61 mumps 165 Munich University’s Children’s Hospital 46 muscles, tetanus 91 mutations, genes 44 Mycobacterium 27 myositis 39 National Food Survey (UK) 188, 189 National Health Service (NHS) 138, 210, 211–12 National Institute of Health, Phoenix, Arizona 70 National Institutes for Health (US) 18 natural killer cells 219 natural selection 124–6, 206 Nature 179 Nauru 58 necrotising enterocolitis 222 necrotising fasciitis 20 Neolithic Revolution 184–5, 187, 200, 201 nerves 104–5 nervous system, multiple sclerosis 41 Netherlands 52, 255, 256–7 neuropsychiatric disorders see mental health conditions neurotransmitters 103, 104–5 New York City 96 New York University 162, 214 New Zealand 46 Nicholson, Jeremy 147, 148, 160, 161 Nieuwdorp, Max 255, 256–7 nitric oxide 177 nitrite 177 Nitrosomonas eutropha 178 Nobel Prizes 37, 74, 180, 235 nori 192 North America 50, 117, 214–15, 224–6 Northern Ireland 47 nostrils, microbes in 21 nut allergies 38, 39 nutrition see food ob/ob mice 67–9, 72–3, 194 obesity 38, 43, 44, 54–61 Akkermansia and 79–81 antibiotics and 147–9, 159–65 appetite control 67–8, 72–3, 80, 196 breast-feeding and 223–4 and Caesarean sections 212 and cancer 145 in childhood 49 in developing countries 47 and diabetes 256 diet and 183 difficulty in losing weight 59–60 faecal transplants and 255–7 and fall in calorific intake 189 fat cells 78–9 garden warblers 54–6 gastric bypasses 81–2 gender differences 51 and genetics 60 gut microbiota and 23–4, 66–72, 76 incidence of 41–2, 46, 52–3 as infectious disease 75–7 and leaky gut syndrome 140–1 and liver cancer 145 and low fibre intake 197 metabolic syndrome 255–7 racial differences 50 surgery for 61, 66 viruses and 57, 61, 74–8 Obesity Society 82 obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) 42, 44, 51, 98–9, 105, 172–3, 174, 212, 246 oestrogen 171 Old Friends hypothesis 132, 145, 266 oligofructose 193–4 oligosaccharides 216–18, 220, 221, 222, 226 omnivores 276 OpenBiome 253–4, 261–2 oranges 198 overweight 41–2, 58 Oxford University 36, 37 oxygen 9 oxytocin 104–5 Pacific islands 58 Pakistan 26, 131 palaeo-diet 263 pancreas 39, 40, 180, 242–3 panda, giant 181–2 Papua New Guinea 84, 142 parasites 27, 83–4, 96–7, 98, 118 Paris 96 Parker, Janet 25, 26 Parkinson’s disease 105, 173, 174, 175, 254 passwords, beneficial microbes 134–5 Pasteur, Louis 34, 236 pathogens 28–9 peanut allergy 39 pectin 192 penicillin 36–7, 150, 154, 158, 162–3, 182 penicillinase 154 Penicillium 36 Peptostreptococcaceae 222 pesticides 272 Petrof, Elaine 259–60 Peyer’s patches 128 phagocytes 120, 141 pharyngitis 152 pheromones 100–2, 177 Phipps, James 29 pigs 148 pinworms 118 plague 30 plant foods see fruit; vegetables plants, ecological succession 208 pneumonia 27, 153, 268 polio 27–8, 29, 31, 38, 266 Pollan, Michael 202 pollen 119 polysaccharides 181 polysaccharide A (PSA) 134–5 Porpyhra 192 potatoes 191 poverty 48 Prague 97 prebiotics 258 pregnancy 205 antibiotics in 163 gut microbiota 229–31 metabolic changes 229–30 probiotics in 239 toxoplasmosis 96 vaginal bacteria 207–8 preservatives, food 202 Prevotella 185, 191, 192, 194, 206, 213, 263 primates 16, 102 probiotics 237–44, 257–9 propionate 107–9, 195, 217 Propionibacterium 20, 21, 168–9, 213, 239 Propionibacterium acnes 143–4 proteins 7, 9, 180, 196–7 Proteobacteria 65, 226, 230 Pseudomonas 206, 213 psoriasis 23, 49 psychoanalysis 238 Puerto Rico 214 pulses, fibre content 276 Pyrenees 115 Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario 259 quorum sensing 136 rabbits 245 rabies 29–30, 84, 85 racial differences, twenty-first-century illnesses 50–1 Rain Man (film) 87 ram’s horn snails 83 rashes 155 rats 18, 84, 85, 96, 107–8, 185–6, 245 raw-food diet 198–9 RePOOPulate 260 reptiles, gut microbiota 205 respiratory tract infections 152, 153, 222 rheumatoid arthritis 39, 41, 223, 254 rice 198 rickets 221 Riley, Lee 165 Rio de Janeiro 209 Robogut 110, 111, 259 rodents 245 Roseburia intestinalis 197 Rosenberg, Eugene and Ilana 126 Rowen, Lee 7–8, 24 rubella 31, 165 Rush Children’s Hospital, Chicago 92 Russia 173 Rwanda 201 rye 139, 194, 199 sac-winged bats 100, 101 Salmonella 271 Sandler, Richard 92, 94, 95 sanitation 15, 35–6 Sardinia 52 savants, autistic 87, 108 Scandinavia 188 scarlet fever 27 scent see smells scent glands 177 schizophrenia 97–8, 105, 106, 108, 141, 246 Science 179 Scientific American magazine 97 scleroderma 50 scurvy 221 seaweed 192, 247 Second World War 37, 150, 158, 189 Semmelweis, Ignaz 32–3, 34, 215 sepsis 36 septicaemia 34 serotonin 103, 104–5 Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID) 127 sewage systems 15 sex, pheromones 100–2, 177 sex hormones 51, 52 sexually-transmitted diseases 28 Sharon, Gil 101 sheep 201, 204 Shigella 128 shingles 271 short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) 107–9, 195–6, 195, 197, 198, 217, 257 sinusitis 152, 157 skin 18, 23, 45 acne 23, 129, 141, 142–4, 168 hygiene 168–9 microbiota 19–20, 168–9, 213 pheromones 101–2 psoriasis 23, 49 rashes 155 sweat 177 washing 175, 177–8 see also eczema smallpox 25–7, 29, 30–1, 38, 266 smells: faeces 248 pheromones 100–2 Smith, Mark 252–3, 259, 261–2 smoking 145 snail, ram’s horn 83 Snow, John 35, 45–6 soaps 168–71, 172, 175, 177–8 social behaviour, autism 88 Soho, London 34–5, 45–6, 135 soil: ammonia-oxidising bacteria 176 antibiotic contamination 164–5 Somalia 25, 50–1 sore throats 152, 153, 173–4 South Africa 153–4 South America 47, 173, 214 South Pacific islands 58 Spain 151 sperm donors 260–1 spores, Clostridium difficile 234 squid, Hawaiian bobtail 11 Staphylococcus 20, 21, 36, 131, 172, 177, 213, 219 Staphylococcus aureus 154, 171, 172, 271 statins 269 steroids 116 stinkbugs 205 stomach 13 cancer 144 digestion 180 gastric bypasses 61, 66, 81–2 microbes in 21 ulcers 73–4, 144 stools see faeces Strachan, David 116–17, 118–19, 121, 131 Streptococcus 20, 150, 160, 172, 173–5, 206, 213, 215, 219, 229 Streptococcus pneumoniae 217 stress: irritable bowel syndrome 63, 92–3 leaky gut syndrome and 141 and stomach ulcers 73–4 stress hormones 93 strokes 50, 107, 183, 199, 256, 268 Stuebe, Alison 225 Stunkard, Dr Albert 59 Sudden Infant Death syndrome 222–3 Sudo, Nobuyuki 93 sugars 198 digestion 70, 180 falling consumption of 188–9 high-sugar diets 185–6, 192–3 and obesity 189–90 oligosaccharides 216 Sulawesi 142 superfoods 114 supermarkets 75, 159, 169, 182–3 surgery: antibiotic use 37 Caesarean sections 209–15, 220, 274 gastric bypasses 61, 66, 81–2 hygiene 34 Sutterella 282 sweat 101–2, 176–7 Sweden 51, 66–7, 131, 150, 157 Swiss mice 99 Switzerland 52 syphilis 27, 28, 158 T helper cells 118–19, 132 T regulatory cells (Tregs) 133–4, 144, 243 Tanzania 246 tapeworms 118 Tel Aviv University 101, 126 termites 181 testosterone 171, 267 tetanus 90–1 tetracycline antibiotics 168 throats, sore 152, 153, 173–4 thyroid hormones 171 ticks 1–2 tics, physical 282 toads 83–4 tonsillitis 223 Toronto 51 Tourette’s syndrome 42, 98–9, 175, 246 toxic megacolon 156, 245 Toxoplasma 84, 85, 96–7, 98–9, 112, 261 transplants, faecal 245, 248–57, 258–62 Transpoosion 245, 248 traveller’s diarrhoea 63–4 tree of life 16–17, 123–4 trematode worms 83–4 tribal societies: gut microbiota 262–3, 282 personal hygiene 175–6 triclosan 170–2 tryptophan 103, 105 tuberculosis 27, 29, 268 Turkey 97 Turnbaugh, Peter 68–70, 160, 182 Tutsi 201 twenty-first-century illnesses 37–43, 46–53, 266–9 antibiotics and 158–9 and Caesarean sections 212 diet and 183 dysbiosis 64–5 faecal transplants and 254 gender differences 267 inflammation 243, 268 see also allergies; autoimmune diseases; mental health conditions; obesity typhoid 27, 30 ulcerative colitis 42, 49, 144 ulcers, stomach 73–4, 144 United States of America: affluence and disease 47 antibacterial products 172 antibiotic use in livestock 147–8, 164, 165, 272 antibiotics 37, 150, 151, 152, 163, 215 breast-feeding 225–6 Caesarean sections 209–10 diabetes 52, 167 encephalitis lethargica 173 faecal transplants 252–4 fall in calorific intake 189 fibre consumption 197 gut microbiota 262–3 infant mortality 222–3 infectious diseases 27 irritable bowel syndrome 63 obesity 41–2, 46, 49, 58, 75, 81 supermarkets 183 vaccination schemes 31 University of Bern 101 University of Birmingham 25–6 University of Bristol 130 University of Colorado, Boulder 4, 213, 281–2 University of Gothenburg 66, 131 University of Guelph, Ontario 109, 111, 259 University of North Carolina School of Medicine 225 University of Western Ontario 106 University of Wisconsin 74–5 unsaturated fatty acids 188 upper respiratory tract infections (URI) 152, 153, 222 urinary tract 19 urinary tract infections 155, 157 urine, triclosan in 171 US Department of Agriculture (USDA) 189 US Navy 160 uterine cancer 145 vaccinations 25, 26–7, 29–31, 35, 91, 118, 165 vagina: microbes 19, 205–9, 212–14, 229 probiotic inserts 239 vaginal birth 209–12, 220, 274, 278 vagus nerve 91, 104–5 vampire bats 124–5, 181 vancomycin 91, 161 vegans 164 vegetables: antibiotic contamination 164–5, 272 digestion 70 fibre content 190–1, 276 Five-a-Day campaign 273 prebiotics 258 vegetarian diet 71, 192 Venezuela 262–3 Vetter, David 126–8, 181 Vibrio cholerae 135–7 Vienna General Hospital 32–3 viruses 8 antibiotics and 152 and autoimmune diseases 167 chicken disease 57, 61, 74–5, 76–7, 78 flu pandemic 48 menstrual cycle 229 and obesity 57, 61, 74–8 polio 27–8, 29, 31, 38, 266 rabies 29–30, 84, 85 smallpox 25–7, 29, 30–1, 38, 266 vitamins 16, 227–8 colon and 180–1 deficiencies 221 enzymes and 263 synthesis by bacteria 23 vitamin B12 23, 228 Vrieze, Anne 255, 256–7 VSL#3 242–4 Walkerton, Canada 62 wallabies 181 warblers, garden 54–6, 57, 73, 77, 78 Warren, Robin 74 washing 172–3, 175, 177–8 Washington University, St Louis 67, 247, 262 water birth 214 water supply: antibacterial products in 171, 172 cholera epidemic 34–5, 45–6, 135 chlorination 172 and irritable bowel syndrome 62 water-borne diseases 34–6 wealth, and twenty-first-century illnesses 46–8 weaning 226 weight gain: calories and 77–8 in pregnancy 230 see also obesity weight loss: dieting 59, 148–9, 184, 186–7, 197, 199 faecal transplants and 257 garden warblers 55–6 raw-food diet 199 Wellcome Collection, London 279 West Papua 176 Western diet 185–6 wet nursing 220–1 wheat 7, 111, 139, 194 wheat intolerance 38, 199–202 Whipple’s disease 85, 106, 107 white blood cells 45 Whitlock, David 176, 177–8 whooping cough 27 Whorwell, Peter 62–3, 252 Wold, Agnes 131–2, 134 women: acne 142–3 antibiotic use 150 breast-feeding 216–20, 221, 222–6, 230–1, 274–5, 278, 285 Caesarean births 209–15, 220, 274 consumption of fats 188 death in childbirth 32–3 lupus 168 menstrual cycle 229 obesity and cancer 145 pregnancy 229–30 Toxoplasma infection 96–7 transfer of microbes to babies 204–9, 212–14 and twenty-first-century illnesses 51–2, 267 vaginal births 209–12, 220, 274, 278 World Health Organisation (WHO) 25–6, 31, 211, 225, 239, 278, 285 The Worm, number of genes 7, 8 worms 83–4, 118 wounds 34, 36 Wrangham, Richard 198–9 xylan 191 Xylanibacter 185, 191 yeasts 8 yogurt 206, 237, 239–40, 244 Zobellia galactanivorans 192 zonula occludens toxin (Zot) 136–7, 139 zonulin 137, 139–40, 200 ABOUT THE AUTHOR ALANNA COLLEN is a science writer with a master’s degree in biology from Imperial College London and a PhD in evolutionary biology from University College London and the Zoological Society of London.


pages: 272 words: 71,487

Getting Better: Why Global Development Is Succeeding--And How We Can Improve the World Even More by Charles Kenny

"Robert Solow", agricultural Revolution, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Charles Lindbergh, clean water, demographic transition, double entry bookkeeping, experimental subject, Fall of the Berlin Wall, germ theory of disease, Gunnar Myrdal, income inequality, income per capita, Indoor air pollution, inventory management, Kickstarter, Milgram experiment, off grid, open borders, purchasing power parity, randomized controlled trial, structural adjustment programs, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, total factor productivity, Toyota Production System, trade liberalization, transaction costs, very high income, Washington Consensus, X Prize

Sadly, the systems were built on the theory it was the stench—“miasma”—that was responsible for illnesses such as cholera. So long as the smell was limited to the river, so the thinking went, no harm was done. John Snow’s analysis of London’s cholera outbreaks in the 1850s formed the scientific basis for overturning miasma theories and connecting the disease with infected water. A further spur to sewage reform was Pasteur’s early work confirming the germ theory of disease. And with the 1865 completion of Joseph Bazalgette’s five new sewer lines that transported waste to the east out of the city, the capital freed itself from major cholera outbreaks—if at considerable expense.12 The germ theory took some time to gain acceptance worldwide. Indeed, we’ll see that many in the developing world are not aware of the theory to this day. But once the theory did spread and disease became better understood, more cost-effective interventions than networked water became available to reduce the burden of waterborne illness.

In India, the percentage of parents who think the correct treatment for a child with diarrhea is to reduce the amount they are given to drink (absolutely the wrong thing to do) varies considerably from state to state. Fewer than 5 percent give this wrong answer in states like Kerala, where we have seen that health outcomes are very strong. Above 50 percent suggest this response in West Bengal—where child mortality in the 1990s was about three times as high as in Kerala.24 Again, we have seen that the germ theory of disease has been central to the development and spread of numerous health-saving interventions as powerful yet mundane as hand washing. But only one-third of respondents in a Ghanaian survey understood that ill health related to sanitation was the result of germs rather than heat, smell, or dirt, for example. In rural Guinea-Bissau, only 16 percent of interviewed parents had heard of pneumonia, even though it is responsible for as many as one-third of child deaths in the country.25 Evidence from household survey data covering 278,000 children across forty-five developing countries supports the importance of the demand side of health.


Betrayal of Trust: The Collapse of Global Public Health by Laurie Garrett

accounting loophole / creative accounting, airport security, Albert Einstein, anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, biofilm, clean water, collective bargaining, desegregation, discovery of DNA, discovery of penicillin, Drosophila, employer provided health coverage, Fall of the Berlin Wall, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, illegal immigration, indoor plumbing, Induced demand, John Snow's cholera map, Jones Act, Louis Pasteur, Mahatma Gandhi, mass incarceration, Maui Hawaii, means of production, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, mouse model, Nelson Mandela, new economy, nuclear winter, phenotype, profit motive, Project Plowshare, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, Right to Buy, Ronald Reagan, sexual politics, Silicon Valley, stem cell, the scientific method, urban decay, urban renewal, War on Poverty, working poor, Works Progress Administration, yellow journalism

Public health fought on behalf of the community, placing special attention on the poorest, least advantaged elements of that community, for it was amid conditions of poverty that disease usually arose. Public health is not an ideology, religion, or political perspective—indeed, history demonstrates that whenever such forces interfere with or influence public health activities a general worsening of the populace’s well-being usually followed. As envisioned by its American pioneers public health was a practical system, or infrastructure, rooted in two fundamental scientific tenets: the germ theory of disease and the understanding that preventing disease in the weakest elements of society ensured protection for the strongest (and richest) in the larger community. As infectious diseases became less of a concern in the wealthy world, in the mid-twentieth century public health leaders struggled to apply those basic tenets, and the infrastructure upon which they were based, to nonmicrobial collective health issues, such as cancer and heart disease.

Further, the sanitarians, among whom Christian moralists predominated, were slow to note advances in science. But advances there were indeed. Antiseptics were discovered in 1870 by England’s Dr. Joseph Lister, who found that by pouring carbolic acid on a wound or a suture site, infection would never take hold there. Beginning in 1876 Drs. Robert Koch in Berlin and Louis Pasteur in Paris were racing to identify the individual germs that caused disease.50 In 1880 Pasteur published his landmark Germ Theory of Disease, in which he argued that all contagious diseases were caused by microscopic organisms that damaged the human victim at the cellular level—as Rudolf Virchow had argued—and spread from person to person. In Berlin, Paul Erlich went a step further, discovering that animals that survived an infection had substances in their blood that could successfully fight off the disease in other affected animals.

Similarly, New York City’s health leaders realized that the age of laboratory-informed decision making had arrived and constructed the nation’s first public health laboratory. To really grasp the revolution then under way, however, men like Hewitt and his New York counterparts sailed off to Europe to sit at the feet of the great Koch and Pasteur. All over America there were individuals inside local health departments who wholeheartedly embraced Pasteur’s germ theory of disease, reveled in the newfound possibilities of their laboratories, and, practically overnight, changed the methods, strategies, and tactics of government public health. Past measures of disease prevention and epidemic control may have been effective—at least in some cases—but they lacked scientific explanation. Without a clear rationale for draining swamps or vaccinating children, health advocates had little choice but to await an epidemic and, capitalizing on the public’s hysteria, twist the arms of politicians and men of commerce in order to obtain the desired laws and funds.


pages: 669 words: 195,743

Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic by David Quammen

Alfred Russel Wallace, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, conceptual framework, coronavirus, dark matter, digital map, double helix, experimental subject, facts on the ground, Fellow of the Royal Society, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, Google Earth, invention of agriculture, Isaac Newton, John Snow's cholera map, Louis Pasteur, out of africa, Pearl River Delta, South China Sea, urban sprawl

Whooping cough, to take another example, has a critical community size that differs slightly from the measles number because it’s a different disease, caused by a microbe with different characteristics: different transmission efficiency, different virulence, different period of infectivity, et cetera. For whooping cough, the CCS seems to be more like two hundred thousand people. Such considerations have become grist for a lot of fancy ecological mathematics. Daniel Bernoulli, a Dutch-born mathematician from a family of mathematicians, was arguably the first person to apply mathematical analysis to disease dynamics, long before the germ theories of disease (there was a gaggle, not just one) became widely accepted. In 1760, while holding a professorship at the University of Basel in Switzerland, Bernoulli produced a paper on smallpox, exploring the costs versus the benefits of universal immunization against that disease. His career was long and eclectic, encompassing mathematical work on a wide range of topics in physics, astronomy, and political economy, from the movement of fluids and the oscillation of strings to the measurement of risk and ideas about insurance.

Robert Koch, who had been a student of Jakob Henle’s at Göttingen, advanced beyond observation and supposition with his experimental work of the 1870s and 1880s, identifying the microbial causes of anthrax, tuberculosis, and cholera. Koch’s discoveries, along with those of Pasteur and Joseph Lister and William Roberts and John Burdon Sanderson and others, provided the empirical bases for a swirl of late-nineteenth-century ideas that commonly get lumped as “the germ theory” of disease, which marked a movement away from older notions of malign vapors, transmissible poisons, imbalanced humors, contagious putrefaction, and magic. But the germs with which Koch, Pasteur, and Lister mainly concerned themselves (apart from Pasteur’s brilliant guesswork on rabies) were bacteria. And bacteria weren’t quite so ineffable. They could be seen with a normal microscope. They could be cultured in a Petri dish (the invention of Julius Petri, Koch’s assistant) containing a nutrient-rich medium of agar.

We provide an irresistible opportunity for enterprising microbes by the ubiquity and abundance of our human bodies. Everything I’ve just mentioned is encompassed within this rubric: the ecology and evolutionary biology of zoonotic diseases. Ecological circumstance provides opportunity for spillover. Evolution seizes opportunity, explores possibilities, and helps convert spillovers to pandemics. It’s a neat but sterile historical coincidence that the germ theories of disease came to scientific prominence at about the same time, in the late nineteenth century, as the Darwinian theory of evolution—neat because these were two great bodies of insight with much to offer each other, and sterile because their synergy was long delayed, as germ theories remained for another sixty years largely uninformed by evolutionary thinking. Ecological thinking, in its modern form, arose even later and was equally slow to be absorbed by disease science.


pages: 300 words: 84,762

Vaccinated: One Man's Quest to Defeat the World's Deadliest Diseases by Paul A. Offit

1960s counterculture, Albert Einstein, Berlin Wall, discovery of penicillin, en.wikipedia.org, germ theory of disease, Isaac Newton, life extension, Louis Pasteur, Ronald Reagan

He then injected his culture of anthrax bacteria into mice and found that again they all got sick; their lungs were loaded with anthrax bacteria. Koch had made an important observation. Until that time, scientists had believed that only bacteria taken from someone who was sick could make you sick. Koch proved that bacteria grown in his laboratory could also cause disease. Robert Koch was a father of the germ theory of disease. During the next ten years Koch found that he could grow bacteria on nutrient media made from potatoes and gelatin. He placed his media in special flat glass dishes invented by a young researcher working in his laboratory, Julius Petri. Later, Koch discovered the bacteria that cause tuberculosis and cholera. By 1900, researchers had found twenty-one different bacteria that cause diseases.

Daniel, Charles Darwin, Charles DeBakey, Michael Deer, Brian Deinhardt, Friedrich deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) diphtheria Division of Biologics Standards Domagk, Gerhard Donaldson, Liam Douglas, Gordon Down syndrome Dugas, Gaetan Dulbecco, Renato Ebola virus eclampsia Edmonston, David Edwards, Anthony eggs Einstein, Albert Eisenhower, Dwight electron microscopy elephantiasis Eli Lilly encephalitis Enders, John Epidemic Intelligence Service Escherichia coli, ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) Evidence of Harm, Family Research Council Faubus, Orval Fauci, Anthony Faulkner, William Fay School federal government, and vaccine licensing Fernald School fetal tissue Fibiger, Johannes Fleming, Alexander flesh-eating bacteria Florey, Howard flu. See influenza Flutie, Doug formaldehyde, in vaccine development, fowlpox Fox Chase Cancer Center Francis, Thomas Franklin, Benjamin Gallo, Robert gamma globulin, with measles vaccine Gard, Sven Gates, Bill and Melinda Gelmo, Paul Genentech genetic engineering genetics, and disease Gerberding, Julie germ theory of disease German measles. See rubella GlaxoSmithKline Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations gold miners, pneumonia in Goodpasture, Ernest Great Ormond Street Hospital green onions Green, Ernest Gregg, Norman McAlister Gross, Ludwik Haemophilus influenzae type b Hahn, Beatrice Hamilton-Ayers, Michele Hammond, Jack Harding, Warren Harrison, George Harvard Medical School Hayflick limit Hayflick, Leonard hemagglutinin hemoglobin S hepatitis B hepatitis vaccine for Hepatitis B: The Hunt for a Killer Virus herpesvirus Hilleman, Anna Hilleman, Edith Hilleman, Elsie Hilleman, Gustave Hilleman, Harold Hilleman, Howard Hilleman, Jeryl Lynn Hilleman, Kirsten Hilleman, Lorraine Hilleman, Maureen Hilleman, Maurice and autism controversy awards and honors and cancer vaccine and chickenpox vaccine and common cold research early life and education family life farming experience and Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine and hepatitis vaccine and influenza vaccine and interferon research and Japanese encephalitis virus vaccine management style of and measles vaccine and mumps vaccine and MMR vaccine obscurity of old age and death and pneumococcal vaccine and polio vaccine research predecessors and rubella vaccine Hilleman, Norman Hilleman, Richard Hilleman, Robert Hilleman, Thelma Hilleman, Victor Hilleman, Walter Hippocrates Hippocratic Oath Hiroshima Hirst, George Hong Kong, bird flu in Hooper, Edward Hoover, Herbert Horstmann, Dorothy Horton, Richard House Committee on Government Reform Hubbard Farms Hughes, Walte human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) human papillomavirus (HPV) Hunter, John hydrocephalus Iditarod dogsled race immune response Imus, Don Infectious Diseases Society of America influenza Asian bird vaccine for in wars Influenza Commission Ingalls, Theodore Institute of Medicine insulin interferon Isaacs, Alick Japanese encephalitis virus Jenner, Edward John Howland Award Johns Hopkins Hospital Johns Hopkins School of Public Health Kaposi’s sarcoma Karolinska Institute Katz, Sam Kennedy, John F.


pages: 363 words: 108,670

Galileo's Daughter: A Historical Memoir of Science, Faith and Love by Dava Sobel

Albert Einstein, back-to-the-land, cognitive dissonance, Dava Sobel, Defenestration of Prague, Edmond Halley, germ theory of disease, Hans Lippershey, Isaac Newton, Johannes Kepler, Louis Pasteur, Murano, Venice glass, On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres, Peace of Westphalia, retrograde motion

By the early seventeenth century, Europeans had gained enough experience with the pestilence to recognize the accumulation of dead rats in streets and houses as the harbinger of disease. The causal connection, however, remained elusive. People continued to blame the plague on miasmas of swampy air, the full Moon, conjunctions of the planets, famine, fate, beggars, prostitutes, or Jews. Two hundred years before the germ theory of disease, no one realized that the plague was caused by microbes living in and on the ubiquitous black rats.* When a sick rat died, its hungry fleas jumped the few inches to another animal, or to a nearby human. Having ingested infected blood, the fleas delivered the disease by inoculation with their next bite. The poisonous plague bacterium multiplied rapidly in a new host’s bloodstream until infection pervaded the body, attacking vital organs to cause kidney failure, heart failure, hemorrhaging blood vessels, and death by septic shock.

Isaac Newton is born in England, December 25. 1643 Galileo’s student Evangelista Torricelli (1608-47) invents mercury barometer. 1644 Pope Urban VIII dies. 1648 Thirty Years’ War ends. 1649 Vincenzio Galilei (son) dies in Florence, May 15. 1654 Grand Duke Ferdinando II improves on Galileo’s thermometer by closing the glass tube to keep air out. 1655-56 Christiaan Huygens (1629-95) improves telescope, discovers largest of Saturn’s moons, sees Saturn’s “companions” as a ring, patents pendulum clock. 1659 Suor Arcangela dies at San Matteo, June 14. 1665 Jean-Dominique Cassini (1625-1712) discovers and times the rotation of Jupiter and Mars. 1669 Sestilia Bocchineri Galilei dies. 1670 Grand Duke Ferdinando II dies, succeeded by his only surviving son, Cosimo III. 1676 Ole Roemer (1644-1710) uses eclipses of Jupiter’s moons to determine the speed of light; Cassini discovers gap in Saturn’s rings. 1687 Newton’s laws of motion and universal gravitation are published in his Principia. 1705 Edmond Halley (1656-1742) studies comets, realizes they orbit the Sun, predicts return of a comet later named in his honor. 1714 Daniel Fahrenheit (1686-1736) develops mercury thermometer with accurate scale for scientific purposes. 1718 Halley observes that even the fixed stars move with almost imperceptible “proper motion” over long periods of time. 1728 English astronomer James Bradley (1693-1762) provides first evidence for the Earth’s motion through space based on the aberration of starlight. 1755 Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) discerns the true shape of the Milky Way, identifies the Andromeda nebula as a separate galaxy. 1758 “Halley’s comet” returns. 1761 Mikhail Vasilyevich Lomonosov (1711-65) realizes Venus has an atmosphere. 1771 Comet hunter Charles Messier (1730-1817) identifies a list of noncometary objects, many of which later prove to be distant galaxies. 1781 William Herschel (1738-1822) discovers the planet Uranus. 1810 Napoleon Bonaparte, having conquered the Papal States, transfers the Roman archives, including those of the Holy Office with all records of Galileo’s trial, to Paris. 1822 Holy Office permits publication of books that teach Earth’s motion. 1835 Galileo’s Dialogue is dropped from Index of Prohibited Books. 1838 Stellar parallax, and with it the distance to the stars, is detected independently by astronomers working in South Africa, Russia, and Germany; Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel (1784-1846) publishes the first account of this phenomenon, for the star 61 Cygni. 1843 Galileo’s trial documents are returned to Italy. 1846 Neptune and its largest moon are discovered by predictions and observations of astronomers working in several countries. 1851 Jean-Bernard-Leon Foucault (1819-68) in Paris demonstrates the rotation of the Earth by means of a two-hundred-foot pendulum. 1861 Kingdom of Italy proclaimed, uniting most states and duchies. 1862 French chemist Louis Pasteur (1822-95) publishes germ theory of disease. 1877 Asaph Hall (1829-1907) discovers the moons of Mars. 1890-1910 Complete works, Le Opere di Galileo Galilei, are edited and published in Florence by Antonio Favaro. 1892 University of Pisa awards Galileo an honorary degree—250 years after his death. 1893 Providentissimus Deus of Pope Leo XIII cites Saint Augustine, taking the same position Galileo did in his Letter to Grand Duchess Cristina, to show that the Bible did not aim to teach science. 1894 Pasteur’s student Alexandre Yersin (1863-1943) discovers bubonic plague bacillus and prepares serum to combat it. 1905 Albert Einstein (1879-1955) publishes his special theory of relativity, establishing the speed of light as an absolute limit. 1908 George Ellery Hale (1868-1938) discerns the magnetic nature of sunspots. 1917 Willem de Sitter (1872-1934) intuits the expansion of the universe from Einstein’s equations. 1929 American astronomer Edwin Hubble (1889-1953) finds evidence for expanding universe. 1930 Roberto Cardinal Bellarmino is canonized as Saint Robert Bellarmine by Pope Pius XI. 1935 Pope Pius XI inaugurates Vatican Observatory and Astrophysical Laboratory at Castel Gandolfo. 1950 Humani generis of Pope Pius XII discusses the treatment of unproven scientific theories that may relate to Scripture; reaches same conclusion as Galileo’s Letter to Grand Duchess Cristina. 1959 Unmanned Russian Luna 3 spacecraft radios first views of the Moon’s far side from lunar orbit. 1966 Index of Prohibited Books is abolished following the Second Vatican Council. 1969 American astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walk on the Moon. 1971 Apollo 15 commander David R.


pages: 433 words: 106,048

The End of Illness by David B. Agus

Danny Hillis, discovery of penicillin, double helix, epigenetics, germ theory of disease, Google Earth, impulse control, information retrieval, longitudinal study, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microbiome, Murray Gell-Mann, pattern recognition, Pepto Bismol, personalized medicine, randomized controlled trial, risk tolerance, Steve Jobs, the scientific method

I was as guilty as anyone else in this straying. I didn’t leave this particular audience hanging, though. I knew I had to provide some explanation to justify my statements and offer at least some hope for the future. I then shared how we had grown accustomed to a certain mode of thinking in the sciences that owes its origins to discoveries made a long time ago. We’ve had a hard time moving past the germ theory of disease, which dominated, and in many ways defined, medicine in the twentieth century. According to this theory, if you can figure out what species of germ you are infected with, then your problem is solved because that tells you how you should treat the disease. This became the general paradigm of medicine. Doctors would perform a laboratory test to determine what the infectious agent was, then apply a treatment that was specific for that agent or class of agents.

Like Eastern philosophies, the idea was to try to restore the order of the various forces that were controlling the body. But this approach to medicine and honoring the body as a whole was all but abandoned in the early twentieth century, especially in the West, where we became distracted by our triumph over infectious agents. It’s all the more interesting to note that, at the time that the germ theory of disease was really exploding and antibiotics were being discovered, renowned geneticist J. B. S. Haldane articulated the following at Cambridge on February 4, 1923: The recent history of medicine is as follows. Until about 1870 medicine was largely founded on physiology, or, as the Scotch called it “Institutes of Medicine.” Disease was looked at from the point of view of the patient, as injuries still are.


pages: 436 words: 123,488

Overdosed America: The Broken Promise of American Medicine by John Abramson

germ theory of disease, Louis Pasteur, medical malpractice, medical residency, meta analysis, meta-analysis, p-value, placebo effect, profit maximization, profit motive, publication bias, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), stem cell, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions

The dramatic success of the rabies vaccine led to the creation of the Pasteur Institute, still one of the world’s great institutions of medical research. Joseph Meister went on to become a gatekeeper there. (Tragically, in 1940, 55 years after receiving his lifesaving treatment, Joseph Meister took his own life rather than accede to an order issued by invading German soldiers to open Pasteur’s burial crypt.) While Pasteur was making so much progress in France, Robert Koch, a German physician, was putting the finishing touches on the germ theory of disease. In 1882, he reported that the cause of tuberculosis, the tubercle bacillus, could be identified by looking at infected tissue under the microscope. And further, he found that the organisms that cause tuberculosis could be grown in culture, produce disease when injected into laboratory animals, be extracted from these infected animals, and be grown again in culture. These four steps, known as “Koch’s postulates,” became accepted as proof that a specific organism was the cause of a specific disease.

See exercise Flexner Report, 196–97 Fludara, 89 folk medicine, biomedicine as, 201–4 Food and Drug Administration (FDA) antidepressants approval, 115–17, 243 Celebrex review, 23–24, 30, 32–33 Claritin review, 152–53 declining oversight by, 157–58, 161 DTC advertising approval, 150–52 financial ties of, with drug companies, xxii, 85–87, 89–90, 125, 249–50 hormone replacement therapy approval, 59 medical journals and, 37–38 Warning Letters (see Warning Letters, FDA) web site and data, 28, 37 Forteo, 217 Fosamax, 213–15, 218, 246 4S study, 142, 143 Framingham Heart Study, 63, 130–35, 141 free drug samples, 124–26 funding. See also conflicts of interest FDA drug reviews, 85–90, 249 medical research, 94–95, 196–97, 252–53 universal health insurance, xxii, 253–54 gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), 101–2 gastrointestinal complications, 24–25, 28–36, 43 gemfibrozil, 133 Genentech, 226–27 germ theory of disease, 195 ghostwriters, 106–7 Gleevac, 43–44 goals, commercial vs. health, 21–22, 50–51 government, U.S. health care quality and, 257–59 Medicaid, 20, 75, 162 Medicare prescription drug bill and purchasing power of, 245 (see also Medicare) regulatory role of, xxii, 157–58, 161, 249–53 (see also Food and Drug Administration; National Institutes of Health) Republican Party and medical industry, 90–91, 247 research funding by, 94–95 universal health insurance, xvii, xxii, 20, 46, 253–54 (see also health insurance) Guidant, 99, 243–44 guidelines.


pages: 483 words: 134,377

The Tyranny of Experts: Economists, Dictators, and the Forgotten Rights of the Poor by William Easterly

"Robert Solow", air freight, Andrei Shleifer, battle of ideas, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business process, business process outsourcing, Carmen Reinhart, clean water, colonial rule, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Deng Xiaoping, desegregation, discovery of the americas, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, Francisco Pizarro, fundamental attribution error, germ theory of disease, greed is good, Gunnar Myrdal, income per capita, invisible hand, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, John Snow's cholera map, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, Kenneth Rogoff, M-Pesa, microcredit, Monroe Doctrine, oil shock, place-making, Ponzi scheme, risk/return, road to serfdom, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, urban planning, urban renewal, Washington Consensus, WikiLeaks, World Values Survey, young professional

We now know a big part of the problem was the cycling of the disease agents through human waste into drinking water. Princeton Professor Angus Deaton shows in his 2013 book, The Great Escape, that understanding (which led to correcting) this problem had the largest single effect on child mortality in rich countries over this period. We will see in a future chapter how free societies are the best option for scientific discoveries and technological breakthroughs. Here we just note in passing that the germ theory of disease needed to arrive in New York. It did so later in the nineteenth century, mainly through research from England. The physician John Snow’s famous identification of a particular water pump in London as the source of the contaminated water that spread cholera in 1854 London was a key turning point.27 Virtually all the scientific discoveries that also enable progress today on child mortality in poor countries were made in free societies.

Correcting this would require a multipronged attack of government and private actions that lasted for decades. The third problem was getting the population itself to embrace more sanitary habits. Washing one’s hands after going to the bathroom is something we do without thinking today, but it took a lot of effort to get to that point. The population as well as the experts had to embrace the germ theory of disease. The fourth problem was simply that New York and the United States were still poor by today’s standards. Per capita income in the United States in 1850 was one-seventeenth of that today—about the same as Ghana today. Even a rich person like Benjamin Seixas in 1850 would be poor in many dimensions by today’s standards. For example, Benjamin Seixas’ house in 1850 was small even by the standards of today’s cramped New York apartments.


pages: 469 words: 142,230

The Planet Remade: How Geoengineering Could Change the World by Oliver Morton

Albert Einstein, Asilomar, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, Cesare Marchetti: Marchetti’s constant, colonial rule, Colonization of Mars, Columbian Exchange, decarbonisation, demographic transition, Elon Musk, energy transition, Ernest Rutherford, germ theory of disease, Haber-Bosch Process, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, John Harrison: Longitude, John von Neumann, late capitalism, Louis Pasteur, moral hazard, Naomi Klein, nuclear winter, oil shale / tar sands, orbital mechanics / astrodynamics, Philip Mirowski, planetary scale, plutocrats, Plutocrats, renewable energy transition, Scramble for Africa, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, Silicon Valley, smart grid, South China Sea, Stewart Brand, Thomas Malthus

Buckminster, 76 Gagarin, Yuri, 57 Gaia hypothesis, 75, 290–1 Gardiner, Stephen, 161 gas, see natural gas Gates, Bill, 28, 102, 155, 156–7, 353 Gates, Melinda, 353 Gaud, William, 192 GCMs, 314, 317 Gellner, Ernest, 211 General Electric research laboratory, 268–70 genetic modification, 289–90 ‘geoclique’, 157–8, 163, 286 geoengineering, climate see climate geoengineering geology, 40, 321–2 GeoMIP, 113–20, 122, 158 George, Russ, 254–5, 256 George C. Marshall Institute, 154 germ theory of disease, 129 Germany: explosives industry, 190; geoengineering research, 159; nuclear industry, 17, 358; renewable energy (Energiewende), 19, 20, 106, 159; scientific research, 182 Gernsback, Hugo, 243 glaciers and ice: Arctic melting, 313, 362; and cloud brightening, 294–5, 336; and nuclear fallout, 44; protecting, 344–5, 371–2, 374; as record of earlier climates, 222–3, 227, 321, 344; and tracking climate change, 222–7; and volcanic eruptions, 86, 88 global cooling, 275–9 global warming: and counter-geoengineering, 341–2; ‘pause’ in, 3, 70, 108, 280; sulphur’s masking effect, 279–80; see also climate change Goddard Institute for Space Studies, 276 Goldsmith, Oliver, 83 Goodell, Jeff, 157 Gore, Al, 349 GPS, 118–19 Gran, Haaken Hasberg, 252 green movement: and carbon dioxide emissions, 141, 143; and CCS, 247; future scenarios, 351; and geoengineering, 28, 159, 261–2; influence on environmental policies, 19–20, 141; moderate green views on climate change, 135; and nuclear power, 16–17 ‘Greenfinger’ scenario, 352–4 greenhouse gases: and climate change, 65–71, 72–3; and farming, 224–5, 227; harm caused by those other than carbon dioxide, 146; historical atmospheric levels, 222–8; and ice ages, 231; see also carbon dioxide; methane; nitrous oxide; water vapour Greenland, 222, 342, 362, 371, 374 Grübler, Arnulf, 11 guano, 180 Haber, Fritz, 182, 190, 193, 202 Hadley Centre, 273 hail, 271 Hamblin, Jacob Darwin, 136, 309 Hamilton, Clive, 157, 248 Hampson, John, 278 Hansen, James, 90–2, 140, 276 Hardin, Garrett, 77–8 Harvard Forest, 97–8 Harvard University, 28 Havel, Václav, 351 Haywood, Jim, 293 HCFCs, 72, 146 health: effect of European ‘discovery’ of Americas on Native Americans, 227; and fossil fuels, 12, 16; germ theory of disease, 129; nitrogen pollution of water, 195–9; and nuclear power, 15–16, 45; and ozone layer, 49–50; vaccination programmes, 353; and veilmaking, 112, 281; see also air pollution Heard, Gerald, 41, 342 Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 296 Helin, Glo, 328 helium, 178 Hiroshima, 148, 190 holism, 77 Holmes, Arthur, 216 Holocene, 222–4, 226, 231, 236, 241 Hoskins, Brian, 69 House, Jo, 261 Hoyle, Fred, 278 human empire, 24–5, 125, 177–78, 209–10, 372 human prehistory, 229–31, 241–2 Hungary, 314 hurricanes, 284, 294–5, 295–6, 353 Huxley, Aldous, 41 Huxley, Julian, 313–14 Hyde, Roderick, 149, 151 hydrological cycle: future scenarios, 242, 362; and veilmaking, 114–18; workings of, 64, 67 hydropower, 3, 182 hydrosphere, 40 ice see glaciers and ice ice ages: 1960s and 1970s fear of human-generated, 275–8; artificially starting, 342–3; averting, 149, 278; and carbon dioxide in the oceans, 252–3, 254; and climate change, 231; as climate change phenomenon, 130; and greenhouse gases, 222–4; and human development, 230–1; next, 266–7, 277–8; enduring question of origins, 87–8, 98; and plant growth, 233–4; Younger Dryas, 226–7 ice–albedo feedback, 223, 276, 278, 342–3 IG Farben, 190 IMO see International Maritime Organization India: agriculture, 192; air pollution, 365; future scenarios, 364–6, 367–8; monsoons, 86, 364–6; population issues, 187; rainmaking schemes, 271; and veilmaking models, 121 Indonesia, 86–7 industrialization, 128, 177, 225–6, 228–9 infrared radiation, 65–6 Ingold, Tim, 57 interglacials, 222–4 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), 7, 140 internal combustion engine, 212 international agreements see air pollution: agreements; climate negotiations and agreements; nuclear weapons: treaties and test bans; UNFCCC International Energy Agency, 3 International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, 246 International Maritime Organization (IMO), 282–3, 297–8 interstellar travel, 139, 150 Intertropical Convergence Zone, 293 IPCC see Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Ireland, 127 iron fertilization, 252–9, 265 Israel, 16 James, William, 132 Jameson, Fredric, 310 JASON group, 136, 321 Jeanne-Claude, 344 Jefferson, Thomas, 127 Jesus Christ, 125 jet streams, 46–7 Jevons, Stanley, 180–1 Johnson, Lyndon B., 137, 139 Johnston, Harold, 51, 201 Jupiter, 37, 333 Kaempffert, Waldemar, 49, 314 Kármán, Theodore von, 136 Keeling, David, 75–6, 96, 98, 239–40 Keith, David: background, 150; death threats, 104; funds source, 28, 102, 156–7; and geoengineering, 101–2, 107, 149–50, 156–7, 160, 169, 286, 342, 358 Kennedy, John F., 59, 340 Kilimanjaro, Mount, 344–5 Kingsland, Sharon, 79 Kintisch, Eli, 157 Klein, Naomi, 225 Koch, Robert, 129 Krakatau, 86–7, 108 Kravitz, Ben, 113, 116–17 Kruger, Tim, 163 Kyoto conference (1997), 3 Kyoto protocol (2005), 140–1, 144, 145 Lackner, Klaus, 27–8 Langmuir, Irving, 269–70, 272, 295 Latham, John: career, 272–3, 283; cloud work, 268, 272–4, 283–4, 285–8, 294–5, 298–301, 323; home, 298 Latham, Mike, 268, 300 Latour, Bruno, 171, 271 Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, 148–51, 317, 319, 334, 339 Le Châtelier, Henri Louis, 182 Leith, Chuck, 317 Lenton, Tim, 290 Lesseps, Ferdinand de, 128 Levenson, Tom, 324 LeVier, Tony, 57 Levitt, Stephen, 154–5 Lewis, Simon, 227 Libby, Willard, 45–6 Liebig, Justus von, 178–9, 237, 251–2 lightning, 272, 299–301 lightning conductors, 112, 127 lime and liming, 250–1, 363, 371 lithosphere, 40 Livermore see Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Lobell, David, 236, 237, 238, 240 Locher, Fabien, 129 Long, Jane, 20 Lotka, Alfred, 75, 78–9, 175, 217–19 Lovell, Jim, 60 Lovelock, James, 75, 275, 278, 282, 287, 290 Lowell, Percival, 131, 132, 133, 139 McCarthy, Cormac, 309 MacCracken, Mike, 319, 327 MacCready, Paul, 299–300 MacDonald, Gordon, 136–7 McKibben, Bill, 125 Maddox, John, 204 Malthus, Thomas, 180, 185–6, 203 Manhattan Project, 42, 148, 312, 321 Marchetti, Cesare, 137, 246, 259 Mariner 9, 89 Mars: canals, 131–3; colonizing, 139, 140; craters, 322; expensive village on, 374; stratosphere, 37, 89 Martin, John, 252–4 Marx, Karl, 179–80, 205 Maryland, University of, 225 Masco, Joe, 310 Maslin, Mark, 227 Mauritius, 127 Mead, Margaret, 327 measles, 227 Mediterranean region, 116, 198, 230, 241, 375 Medwin, Thomas, 332 mending; 359, 372 mesosphere, 41 Meteorological Office, 293, 294 methane: and climate change, 65, 72; and farming, 224–5; historical atmospheric levels, 223; human responsibility for emissions, 72, 146; positive feedback due to, 241; see also natural gas Mexico, 90–1, 189, 190–1, 192 Mexico, Gulf of, 186, 195–6 Middle East, 284–5 the military, and asteroid impact work, 334–5, 339–41; and cabin ecology, 75; and geoengineering, 315; and climate modification. 158, 270; and cloud seeding. 270, 272; and geophysical warfare, 135–7; and nuclear energy, 16; and nuclear weapons, 42, 306, 308–9 mirrors, space-based, 149, 150–1 Mitchell, Edgar, 77 mitigation see adaptation and mitigation monsoons: future scenarios, 364–6, 367–8, 371; and geoengineering, 292; prehistoric, 241; and volcanic eruptions, 86, 115 Montreal protocol (1987), 53, 110, 143–4 moon: Clementine mission to, 334; craters, 322; Earth seen from, 60, 63, 65; planned human moonbases, 75; planned nuclear explosion on, 338, 339; appearance changed by volcanic eruptions on Earth, 86 Mooney, Pat, 23 More, Sir Thomas, 124, 127 Morrison, David, 328, 330–1 Mossop, S.

Marshall Institute, 154 germ theory of disease, 129 Germany: explosives industry, 190; geoengineering research, 159; nuclear industry, 17, 358; renewable energy (Energiewende), 19, 20, 106, 159; scientific research, 182 Gernsback, Hugo, 243 glaciers and ice: Arctic melting, 313, 362; and cloud brightening, 294–5, 336; and nuclear fallout, 44; protecting, 344–5, 371–2, 374; as record of earlier climates, 222–3, 227, 321, 344; and tracking climate change, 222–7; and volcanic eruptions, 86, 88 global cooling, 275–9 global warming: and counter-geoengineering, 341–2; ‘pause’ in, 3, 70, 108, 280; sulphur’s masking effect, 279–80; see also climate change Goddard Institute for Space Studies, 276 Goldsmith, Oliver, 83 Goodell, Jeff, 157 Gore, Al, 349 GPS, 118–19 Gran, Haaken Hasberg, 252 green movement: and carbon dioxide emissions, 141, 143; and CCS, 247; future scenarios, 351; and geoengineering, 28, 159, 261–2; influence on environmental policies, 19–20, 141; moderate green views on climate change, 135; and nuclear power, 16–17 ‘Greenfinger’ scenario, 352–4 greenhouse gases: and climate change, 65–71, 72–3; and farming, 224–5, 227; harm caused by those other than carbon dioxide, 146; historical atmospheric levels, 222–8; and ice ages, 231; see also carbon dioxide; methane; nitrous oxide; water vapour Greenland, 222, 342, 362, 371, 374 Grübler, Arnulf, 11 guano, 180 Haber, Fritz, 182, 190, 193, 202 Hadley Centre, 273 hail, 271 Hamblin, Jacob Darwin, 136, 309 Hamilton, Clive, 157, 248 Hampson, John, 278 Hansen, James, 90–2, 140, 276 Hardin, Garrett, 77–8 Harvard Forest, 97–8 Harvard University, 28 Havel, Václav, 351 Haywood, Jim, 293 HCFCs, 72, 146 health: effect of European ‘discovery’ of Americas on Native Americans, 227; and fossil fuels, 12, 16; germ theory of disease, 129; nitrogen pollution of water, 195–9; and nuclear power, 15–16, 45; and ozone layer, 49–50; vaccination programmes, 353; and veilmaking, 112, 281; see also air pollution Heard, Gerald, 41, 342 Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 296 Helin, Glo, 328 helium, 178 Hiroshima, 148, 190 holism, 77 Holmes, Arthur, 216 Holocene, 222–4, 226, 231, 236, 241 Hoskins, Brian, 69 House, Jo, 261 Hoyle, Fred, 278 human empire, 24–5, 125, 177–78, 209–10, 372 human prehistory, 229–31, 241–2 Hungary, 314 hurricanes, 284, 294–5, 295–6, 353 Huxley, Aldous, 41 Huxley, Julian, 313–14 Hyde, Roderick, 149, 151 hydrological cycle: future scenarios, 242, 362; and veilmaking, 114–18; workings of, 64, 67 hydropower, 3, 182 hydrosphere, 40 ice see glaciers and ice ice ages: 1960s and 1970s fear of human-generated, 275–8; artificially starting, 342–3; averting, 149, 278; and carbon dioxide in the oceans, 252–3, 254; and climate change, 231; as climate change phenomenon, 130; and greenhouse gases, 222–4; and human development, 230–1; next, 266–7, 277–8; enduring question of origins, 87–8, 98; and plant growth, 233–4; Younger Dryas, 226–7 ice–albedo feedback, 223, 276, 278, 342–3 IG Farben, 190 IMO see International Maritime Organization India: agriculture, 192; air pollution, 365; future scenarios, 364–6, 367–8; monsoons, 86, 364–6; population issues, 187; rainmaking schemes, 271; and veilmaking models, 121 Indonesia, 86–7 industrialization, 128, 177, 225–6, 228–9 infrared radiation, 65–6 Ingold, Tim, 57 interglacials, 222–4 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), 7, 140 internal combustion engine, 212 international agreements see air pollution: agreements; climate negotiations and agreements; nuclear weapons: treaties and test bans; UNFCCC International Energy Agency, 3 International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, 246 International Maritime Organization (IMO), 282–3, 297–8 interstellar travel, 139, 150 Intertropical Convergence Zone, 293 IPCC see Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Ireland, 127 iron fertilization, 252–9, 265 Israel, 16 James, William, 132 Jameson, Fredric, 310 JASON group, 136, 321 Jeanne-Claude, 344 Jefferson, Thomas, 127 Jesus Christ, 125 jet streams, 46–7 Jevons, Stanley, 180–1 Johnson, Lyndon B., 137, 139 Johnston, Harold, 51, 201 Jupiter, 37, 333 Kaempffert, Waldemar, 49, 314 Kármán, Theodore von, 136 Keeling, David, 75–6, 96, 98, 239–40 Keith, David: background, 150; death threats, 104; funds source, 28, 102, 156–7; and geoengineering, 101–2, 107, 149–50, 156–7, 160, 169, 286, 342, 358 Kennedy, John F., 59, 340 Kilimanjaro, Mount, 344–5 Kingsland, Sharon, 79 Kintisch, Eli, 157 Klein, Naomi, 225 Koch, Robert, 129 Krakatau, 86–7, 108 Kravitz, Ben, 113, 116–17 Kruger, Tim, 163 Kyoto conference (1997), 3 Kyoto protocol (2005), 140–1, 144, 145 Lackner, Klaus, 27–8 Langmuir, Irving, 269–70, 272, 295 Latham, John: career, 272–3, 283; cloud work, 268, 272–4, 283–4, 285–8, 294–5, 298–301, 323; home, 298 Latham, Mike, 268, 300 Latour, Bruno, 171, 271 Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, 148–51, 317, 319, 334, 339 Le Châtelier, Henri Louis, 182 Leith, Chuck, 317 Lenton, Tim, 290 Lesseps, Ferdinand de, 128 Levenson, Tom, 324 LeVier, Tony, 57 Levitt, Stephen, 154–5 Lewis, Simon, 227 Libby, Willard, 45–6 Liebig, Justus von, 178–9, 237, 251–2 lightning, 272, 299–301 lightning conductors, 112, 127 lime and liming, 250–1, 363, 371 lithosphere, 40 Livermore see Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Lobell, David, 236, 237, 238, 240 Locher, Fabien, 129 Long, Jane, 20 Lotka, Alfred, 75, 78–9, 175, 217–19 Lovell, Jim, 60 Lovelock, James, 75, 275, 278, 282, 287, 290 Lowell, Percival, 131, 132, 133, 139 McCarthy, Cormac, 309 MacCracken, Mike, 319, 327 MacCready, Paul, 299–300 MacDonald, Gordon, 136–7 McKibben, Bill, 125 Maddox, John, 204 Malthus, Thomas, 180, 185–6, 203 Manhattan Project, 42, 148, 312, 321 Marchetti, Cesare, 137, 246, 259 Mariner 9, 89 Mars: canals, 131–3; colonizing, 139, 140; craters, 322; expensive village on, 374; stratosphere, 37, 89 Martin, John, 252–4 Marx, Karl, 179–80, 205 Maryland, University of, 225 Masco, Joe, 310 Maslin, Mark, 227 Mauritius, 127 Mead, Margaret, 327 measles, 227 Mediterranean region, 116, 198, 230, 241, 375 Medwin, Thomas, 332 mending; 359, 372 mesosphere, 41 Meteorological Office, 293, 294 methane: and climate change, 65, 72; and farming, 224–5; historical atmospheric levels, 223; human responsibility for emissions, 72, 146; positive feedback due to, 241; see also natural gas Mexico, 90–1, 189, 190–1, 192 Mexico, Gulf of, 186, 195–6 Middle East, 284–5 the military, and asteroid impact work, 334–5, 339–41; and cabin ecology, 75; and geoengineering, 315; and climate modification. 158, 270; and cloud seeding. 270, 272; and geophysical warfare, 135–7; and nuclear energy, 16; and nuclear weapons, 42, 306, 308–9 mirrors, space-based, 149, 150–1 Mitchell, Edgar, 77 mitigation see adaptation and mitigation monsoons: future scenarios, 364–6, 367–8, 371; and geoengineering, 292; prehistoric, 241; and volcanic eruptions, 86, 115 Montreal protocol (1987), 53, 110, 143–4 moon: Clementine mission to, 334; craters, 322; Earth seen from, 60, 63, 65; planned human moonbases, 75; planned nuclear explosion on, 338, 339; appearance changed by volcanic eruptions on Earth, 86 Mooney, Pat, 23 More, Sir Thomas, 124, 127 Morrison, David, 328, 330–1 Mossop, S.


pages: 585 words: 151,239

Capitalism in America: A History by Adrian Wooldridge, Alan Greenspan

"Robert Solow", 2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, agricultural Revolution, air freight, Airbnb, airline deregulation, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, Asian financial crisis, bank run, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Bonfire of the Vanities, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business climate, business cycle, business process, California gold rush, Charles Lindbergh, cloud computing, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, Corn Laws, corporate governance, corporate raider, creative destruction, credit crunch, debt deflation, Deng Xiaoping, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, edge city, Elon Musk, equal pay for equal work, Everybody Ought to Be Rich, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fiat currency, financial deregulation, financial innovation, fixed income, full employment, George Gilder, germ theory of disease, global supply chain, hiring and firing, income per capita, indoor plumbing, informal economy, interchangeable parts, invention of the telegraph, invention of the telephone, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Rogoff, Kitchen Debate, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, Louis Pasteur, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, market bubble, Mason jar, mass immigration, means of production, Menlo Park, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, minimum wage unemployment, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, Network effects, new economy, New Urbanism, Northern Rock, oil rush, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, popular capitalism, post-industrial society, postindustrial economy, price stability, Productivity paradox, purchasing power parity, Ralph Nader, Ralph Waldo Emerson, RAND corporation, refrigerator car, reserve currency, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, savings glut, secular stagnation, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Simon Kuznets, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, South Sea Bubble, sovereign wealth fund, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, strikebreaker, supply-chain management, The Great Moderation, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, total factor productivity, trade route, transcontinental railway, tulip mania, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, union organizing, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, urban sprawl, Vannevar Bush, War on Poverty, washing machines reduced drudgery, Washington Consensus, white flight, wikimedia commons, William Shockley: the traitorous eight, women in the workforce, Works Progress Administration, Yom Kippur War, young professional

A century later, the figure was one in ten thousand. The most striking advance was in the war against death in childhood. In 1900, a tenth of children died in infancy. In some parts of the country, the figure was as high as one in four. In 2000, only one of about 150 babies died in their first year. Scientific advance played a role in this. The work of Louis Pasteur and Robert Koch led to the acceptance of the germ theory of disease and life-saving innovations such as pasteurized milk. Advancing knowledge led to better behavior: cities began to remove garbage, purify water supplies, and process sewage; citizens washed their hands and otherwise improved their personal habits. The battle against ill health proved so successful by 2000 that some inhabitants of Silicon Valley began to regard death as a problem to be solved rather than a fact to be approached with dignity.

Confederate economy, 81, 81–82 1800–1860, 41, 59 1880–1917, 154, 155, 156 1920–1940, 187, 194 1930–1936, 251–52 1942–1945, 268 1960–1965, 298 1970–1990, 359 1998–2000, 367 Geneen, Harold, 320 General Electric (GE), 105, 140, 143, 144, 148–49, 202, 203–4, 280, 290, 312, 319, 330, 335–36, 392, 413 General Motors (GM), 209–12, 268, 288, 289, 294, 314, 318, 333, 359, 360 geographical mobility, 11–12, 389, 392–93 George, Henry, 177 George Washington Bridge, 90 germ theory of disease, 430 Giannini, Amadeo, 3 GI Bill, 273, 274, 281–82 Gilder, George, 333 Gilman, George Francis, 140 Giuliani, Rudy, 337–38 Glass-Steagall Act, 343 Glidden, Joseph, 116 globalization, 4, 278–79, 294–95, 320–21, 332, 343–47, 366, 376–77 Golden Gate Bridge, 274, 412 Gold Exchange Standard, 258–59 “Goldilocks economy,” 366–67 Goldin, Claudia, 295, 400 Goldman Sachs, 375 gold reserves, 228, 228, 229, 242, 307, 308 gold rush, 42, 101, 111 gold standard, 25, 150–53, 157, 160–63, 184–85, 226–29, 258–59, 306–7, 329 Gold Standard Act of 1900, 152 Goldwater, Barry, 277, 304 Gompers, Samuel, 193 Goodyear, Charles, 24, 47, 422 Google, 349, 354–55, 356, 390–91, 396 Gordon, Robert, 4, 199, 274–75, 366–67 Gore, Al, 230, 368 Gore, Howard Mason, 199 Gould, Jay, 124, 130, 139, 167 government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs), 379–80 Grand Central Station (New York City), 96 Granger movement, 171–72 Grant, James, 193 Grant, Ulysses S., 267 Grapes of Wrath (Steinbeck), 225, 262 Gray, Elisha, 109 Grayson, Jackson, 318–19 Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company (A&P), 140 “great compression,” 295 Great Crash of 1929, 27, 221–24, 222, 242 Great Depression, 4, 220–66, 373, 418 business and the, 262–66 causes of, 226–37 rising to the challenge, 237–41 Great Merger Movement, 142–45 Great Migration, 11–12, 180–81, 214–15, 392, 436 Great Northern Railway, 88 Great Recession, 386 Great Society, 25, 303–5 Great Stagnation, 4, 399–416, 438 Great Upheaval of 1886, 173 greed and selfishness, 132, 424–25 Greeley, Horace, 73, 130 Grove, Andy, 353 growth rate, 29, 92–93, 387, 387 Grund, Francis, 43 Grundy, Joseph, 232 Haas, Walter, 291 Hamilton, Alexander, 9, 32, 40, 61–67, 161, 239 Hamilton Tariff of 1789, 65 Hancock, John, 32 H&R Block, 293 Hanna, Mark, 159, 168 Hansen, Alvin, 4, 273, 276 Hanson, Gordon, 371 Harding, Warren, 188, 189, 190, 204 “hard” money, 160–61 Harlem, 215 Harlem Renaissance, 215 Harley-Davidson, 345 Harper, Michael, 324 Hartwig, Ron, 318 Hartz, Louis, 182 Harvard Business School, 363, 369 Hawaii, 95 Hawley, Willis, 230 Hawthorne, Nathaniel, 55 Hayek, Friedrich, 26, 277 Hayes, Robert, 311 Hayes, Rutherford B., 167 Hearst, William Randolph, 245 Heckman, James, 400 Hegel, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich, 182 Heinz, H.


pages: 421 words: 147,305

The Medical Detectives by Berton Roueche

Albert Einstein, double entry bookkeeping, germ theory of disease, Louis Pasteur

It was anthrax whose elucidation by the then obscure German country doctor Robert Koch at the University of Breslau in 1876 (in a paper entitled "Die Atiologie der Milz-brandkrankheit begrundet auf die Entwicklungsgeschichte des Bacillus Anthracis") provided the first proof that a specific microorganism could cause a specific disease, a demonstration that largely completed the establishment of the germ theory of disease causation. And it was from the procedure he so successfully followed in his anthrax study that Koch conceived the celebrated postulates of experimental evidence that bear his name. This formulation, which establishes four conditions that must be met before a given microorganism can be accepted as the cause of a given disease, is the keystone of modern bacteriology. The hosts preferred by the anthrax organism are horses, goats, cattle, sheep, and swine.

The renowned eighteenth-century American clinician Benjamin Rush was responsible for one of the earliest of these. Rush treated mental patients in his Philadelphia practice with a shock therapy that involved the induction of suppuration at the back of the neck to excite a tonic discharge "from the neighborhood of the brain." The triumphant confirmation in the late nineteenth century of the germ theory of disease provided a more convenient method of producing a chemotherapeutic shock. In 1890, the Austrian neuropsychiatrist Julius Wagner von Jauregg used an extract of the tubercle bacillus to ignite what he hoped would be an explosively curative fever in an insane patient. This early effort was not a success, but many years later, in 1914, he tried again, with the malaria organism, and this time achieved a distinct improvement in the condition of a group of men suffering from general paresis.


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Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress by Steven Pinker

3D printing, access to a mobile phone, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, anti-communist, Anton Chekhov, Arthur Eddington, artificial general intelligence, availability heuristic, Ayatollah Khomeini, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, Black Swan, Bonfire of the Vanities, business cycle, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carbon footprint, clean water, clockwork universe, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, Columbine, conceptual framework, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, dark matter, decarbonisation, deindustrialization, dematerialisation, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, distributed generation, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, Doomsday Clock, double helix, effective altruism, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, end world poverty, endogenous growth, energy transition, European colonialism, experimental subject, Exxon Valdez, facts on the ground, Fall of the Berlin Wall, first-past-the-post, Flynn Effect, food miles, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, frictionless, frictionless market, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, Hans Rosling, hedonic treadmill, helicopter parent, Hobbesian trap, humanitarian revolution, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, income inequality, income per capita, Indoor air pollution, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of writing, Jaron Lanier, Joan Didion, job automation, Johannes Kepler, John Snow's cholera map, Kevin Kelly, Khan Academy, knowledge economy, l'esprit de l'escalier, Laplace demon, life extension, long peace, longitudinal study, Louis Pasteur, Martin Wolf, mass incarceration, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mikhail Gorbachev, minimum wage unemployment, moral hazard, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, Nate Silver, Nathan Meyer Rothschild: antibiotics, Nelson Mandela, New Journalism, Norman Mailer, nuclear winter, obamacare, open economy, Paul Graham, peak oil, Peter Singer: altruism, Peter Thiel, precision agriculture, prediction markets, purchasing power parity, Ralph Nader, randomized controlled trial, Ray Kurzweil, rent control, Republic of Letters, Richard Feynman, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Rodney Brooks, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Rory Sutherland, Saturday Night Live, science of happiness, Scientific racism, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Simon Kuznets, Skype, smart grid, sovereign wealth fund, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, Stuxnet, supervolcano, technological singularity, Ted Kaczynski, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, the scientific method, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thomas Malthus, total factor productivity, union organizing, universal basic income, University of East Anglia, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, uranium enrichment, urban renewal, War on Poverty, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, women in the workforce, working poor, World Values Survey, Y2K

., died of an infected blister he got while playing tennis. Ever-creative Homo sapiens had long fought back against disease with quackery such as prayer, sacrifice, bloodletting, cupping, toxic metals, homeopathy, and squeezing a hen to death against an infected body part. But starting in the late 18th century with the invention of vaccination, and accelerating in the 19th with acceptance of the germ theory of disease, the tide of battle began to turn. Handwashing, midwifery, mosquito control, and especially the protection of drinking water by public sewerage and chlorinated tap water would come to save billions of lives. Before the 20th century, cities were piled high in excrement, their rivers and lakes viscous with waste, and their residents drinking and washing their clothes in putrid brown liquid.3 Epidemics were blamed on miasmas—foul-smelling air—until John Snow (1813–1858), the first epidemiologist, determined that cholera-stricken Londoners got their water from an intake pipe that was downstream from an outflow of sewage.

Not only did new products and techniques emerge; it became better understood why and how the old ones worked, and thus they could be refined, debugged, improved, combined with others in novel ways and adapted to new uses.”10 The invention of the barometer in 1643, which proved the existence of atmospheric pressure, eventually led to the invention of steam engines, known at the time as “atmospheric engines.” Other two-way streets between science and technology included the application of chemistry, facilitated by the invention of the battery, to synthesize fertilizer, and the application of the germ theory of disease, made possible by the microscope, to keep pathogens out of drinking water and off doctors’ hands and instruments. The applied scientists would not have been motivated to apply their ingenuity to ease the pains of everyday life, and their gadgets would have remained in their labs and garages, were it not for two other innovations. One was the development of institutions that lubricated the exchange of goods, services, and ideas—the dynamic singled out by Adam Smith as the generator of wealth.

Paper presented at the Annual Clock Symposium, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. Evans, G., Ogilvie-White, T., & Thakur, R. 2014. Nuclear weapons: The state of play 2015. Canberra: Centre for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament, Australian National University. Everett, D. 2008. Don’t sleep, there are snakes: Life and language in the Amazonian jungle. New York: Vintage. Ewald, P. 2000. Plague time: The new germ theory of disease. New York: Anchor. Faderman, L. 2015. The Gay Revolution: Story of a struggle. New York: Simon & Schuster. Fariss, C. J. 2014. Respect for human rights has improved over time: Modeling the changing standard of accountability. American Political Science Review, 108, 297–318. Fawcett, A. A., Iyer, G. C., Clarke, L. E., Edmonds, J. A., Hultman, N. E., et al. 2015. Can Paris pledges avert severe climate change?


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The World According to Physics by Jim Al-Khalili

accounting loophole / creative accounting, Albert Einstein, butterfly effect, clockwork universe, cognitive dissonance, cosmic microwave background, cosmological constant, dark matter, double helix, Ernest Rutherford, Fellow of the Royal Society, germ theory of disease, gravity well, Internet of things, Isaac Newton, Murray Gell-Mann, publish or perish, Richard Feynman, Schrödinger's Cat, Stephen Hawking, supercomputer in your pocket, the scientific method

Secondly, a scientific theory must be verifiable in accordance with the scientific method: it must be testable, and those tests or observations have to be repeatable. Finally, a good scientific theory makes new predictions about aspects of the world that it explains, which can then also be tested by further observations or experiments. Our most successful scientific theories, such as relativity, quantum mechanics, the Big Bang theory, Darwinian evolution, plate tectonics, or the germ theory of disease, have all undergone rigorous scrutiny and have all emerged as the best explanations we have. None of these can be dismissed, as one often hears (particularly regarding Darwinian evolution), as ‘just a theory’. Such a statement ignores what it means for a scientific theory to be successful—that it has explanatory power, that it is backed up by evidence, and that it makes predictions that can be tested, and yet it remains falsifiable, in the sense that if observations or experimental results contradict its predictions then it cannot be a correct theory, or at best cannot be the whole story.


Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook That Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and The... by Sally Fallon, Pat Connolly, Mary G. Enig, Phd.

British Empire, clean water, Community Supported Agriculture, germ theory of disease, Louis Pasteur, Mason jar, out of africa, profit motive, the market place, the scientific method

The debate was between the ideas put forth by Louis Pasteur and the ideas outlined by Antoine Bechamp. The scientific community adopted the ideas of Pasteur and completely rejected the ideas of Bechamp. Because of that rejection, and the growth of dogma attached to the theories of Pasteur, our modern medical science may be digging a deep hole for all of us in our desires to overcome disease. Medical and biological education today is based upon Pasteur's "germ theory of disease." Pasteur, who had immense political clout with Emperor Napoleon at the time, put forth the theory that germs, or microbial life, may be divided into "invariable" species and families. He proclaimed that each species caused a specific disease. Later, Dr. Robert Koch put forth his famous "postulates" of microbial infections which solidified Pasteur's point of view. Thus, any germ shown to cause a disease is called a pathogen.

Peel the carrots and cut into a fine julienne. Seed the pepper and cut into thin, 1inch strips. Saute carrots and leeks in butter. When they are just tender, add the pepper and cook about 1 minute. Finally, add zucchini and saute another minute. Season to taste. Every new concept developed in medical science points the way to a new area awaiting further exploration. Discarding both the use of drugs and the germ theory of disease opened the way for me to explore new methods of eliminating the stagnating waste products from the body. Briefly stated my position is: improper foods cause disease; proper foods cure disease. In upholding this theses, I have been in disagreement, at times sharp, with organized orthodox medicine. Henry Bieler, MD Food Is Your Best Medicine LIMA BEANS Plunge freshly hulled or frozen lima beans in boiling filtered water and cook about 8 minutes or until tender.

Add the spinach and cook another minute or so, mixing well, until all moisture is evaporated. Add nutmeg and season to taste. Fill the hollow of each mushroom with a spoonful of stuffing and place in a buttered glass pan. They may be prepared in advance to this point. To cook, add ¼ inch water to the pan, place in a 350-degree oven and bake for about 20 minutes. This is a delicious and elegant accompaniment to beef. Despite proof to the contrary, many doctors still cling to the germ theory of disease and to the necessity of drugs to combat germs. They point out that smallpox, diphtheria, typhoid fever and pneumonia have been conquered. That is true; no one can quarrel with them on that score. But such major chronic disorders as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, arteriosclerosis, nephrosis and hepatitis have increased eightfold. Scientific medicine, while suppressing deadly infectious diseases by the use of modern drugs, antibiotics and immunizations, has not been able to reduce the killing power of another equally frightening set of diseases.


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The People's Republic of Walmart: How the World's Biggest Corporations Are Laying the Foundation for Socialism by Leigh Phillips, Michal Rozworski

Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, call centre, carbon footprint, central bank independence, Colonization of Mars, combinatorial explosion, complexity theory, computer age, corporate raider, decarbonisation, discovery of penicillin, Elon Musk, G4S, Georg Cantor, germ theory of disease, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, hiring and firing, index fund, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, inventory management, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, Joseph Schumpeter, linear programming, liquidity trap, mass immigration, Mont Pelerin Society, new economy, Norbert Wiener, oil shock, passive investing, Paul Samuelson, post scarcity, profit maximization, profit motive, purchasing power parity, recommendation engine, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, sovereign wealth fund, strikebreaker, supply-chain management, technoutopianism, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, theory of mind, transaction costs, Turing machine, union organizing

Of course, within the confines of the operating or examination room, doctors are legitimate experts. They have specialized skills and knowledge furnished by years of medical training. Contrary to the claims of modern-day charlatans, the advent of medical science unquestioningly represented a qualitative leap beyond the magical thinking and credulity that preceded it. The medieval notion that four humors in imbalance causes illness cannot compete with the germ theory of disease. As the lyrics of “The Internationale,” the socialist hymn, famounsly command: “For reason in revolt now thunders, / And at last ends the age of cant! / Away with all your superstitions, / Servile masses arise, arise!” Even so, doctors are not the only medical experts. Although nurses were key to the provision of care in the early-twentieth century United Kingdom, nursing was seen as less valuable because it was associated with femininity and low skill.


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50 Future Ideas You Really Need to Know by Richard Watson

23andMe, 3D printing, access to a mobile phone, Albert Einstein, artificial general intelligence, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, BRICs, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, clean water, cloud computing, collaborative consumption, computer age, computer vision, crowdsourcing, dark matter, dematerialisation, digital Maoism, digital map, Elon Musk, energy security, failed state, future of work, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, happiness index / gross national happiness, hive mind, hydrogen economy, Internet of things, Jaron Lanier, life extension, Mark Shuttleworth, Marshall McLuhan, megacity, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, oil shale / tar sands, pattern recognition, peak oil, personalized medicine, phenotype, precision agriculture, profit maximization, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, RFID, Richard Florida, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, self-driving car, semantic web, Skype, smart cities, smart meter, smart transportation, statistical model, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, strong AI, Stuxnet, supervolcano, telepresence, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, Turing test, urban decay, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, web application, women in the workforce, working-age population, young professional

We should expect data crime to increase significantly, not just at an intergovernmental cybercrime level, but also at a corporate espionage or intellectual property level too. As for ordinary individuals, it’s possible that the default setting will be “public” and that individuals will have to pay to keep their own data private and confidential. the condensed idea A Department of Future Sickness timeline 1870 Germ theory of disease formulated 1921 Insulin developed 1928 Penicillin discovered 1985 Surgical robot conducts first operation 2001 Telesurgery performed 2008 Almost full-face transplant carried out 2020 Healthcare rationing linked to lifestyle choices 2030 Medical data hacking becomes an epidemic 26 Living alone Across the world, the family unit is changing. The nuclear family consisting of mom, dad and two kids is disappearing.


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Billions & Billions: Thoughts on Life and Death at the Brink of the Millennium by Carl Sagan

addicted to oil, Albert Einstein, anti-communist, clean water, cosmic abundance, dark matter, demographic transition, Exxon Valdez, F. W. de Klerk, germ theory of disease, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of agriculture, invention of radio, invention of the telegraph, invention of the telephone, Isaac Newton, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela, pattern recognition, planetary scale, prisoner's dilemma, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ronald Reagan, stem cell, the scientific method, Thomas Malthus, zero-sum game

That means that 99.9 percent of us owe our lives to agricultural technology and the science that underlies it—plant and animal genetics and behavior, chemical fertilizers, pesticides, preservatives, plows, combines and other agricultural implements, irrigation—and refrigeration in trucks, railway cars, stores, and homes. Many of the most striking advances in agricultural technology—including the "Green Revolution"—are products of the twentieth century. Through urban and rural sanitation, clean water, other public health measures, acceptance of the germ theory of disease, antibiotics and other pharmaceuticals, and genetics and molecular biology, medical science has enormously improved the well-being of people all over the world—but especially in the developed countries. Smallpox has been eradicated worldwide, the area of the Earth in which malaria flourishes shrinks year by The Twentieth Century • 247 year, and diseases I remember from my childhood, such as whooping cough, scarlet fever, and polio, are almost gone today.


pages: 309 words: 86,909

The Spirit Level: Why Greater Equality Makes Societies Stronger by Richard Wilkinson, Kate Pickett

basic income, Berlin Wall, clean water, Diane Coyle, epigenetics, experimental economics, experimental subject, Fall of the Berlin Wall, full employment, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, God and Mammon, impulse control, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), knowledge economy, labor-force participation, land reform, longitudinal study, Louis Pasteur, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Milgram experiment, moral panic, offshore financial centre, phenotype, plutocrats, Plutocrats, profit maximization, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, statistical model, The Chicago School, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, ultimatum game, upwardly mobile, World Values Survey, zero-sum game

But before his work could have much benefit he had to persuade people – principally his medical colleagues – to change their behaviour. His real battle was not his initial discovery but what followed from it. His views were ridiculed and he was driven eventually to insanity and suicide. Much of the medical profession did not take his work seriously until Louis Pasteur and Joseph Lister had developed the germ theory of disease, which explained why hygiene was important. We live in a pessimistic period. As well as being worried by the likely consequences of global warming, it is easy to feel that many societies are, despite their material success, increasingly burdened by their social failings. If correct, the theory and evidence set out in this book tells us how to make substantial improvements in the quality of life for the vast majority of the population.


Dinosaurs Rediscovered by Michael J. Benton

All science is either physics or stamp collecting, Bayesian statistics, biofilm, bioinformatics, David Attenborough, Ernest Rutherford, germ theory of disease, Isaac Newton, lateral thinking, North Sea oil, nuclear winter

As for the sausages or the dog, who knows? There could be a million alternative outcomes or explanations. So, climate-change deniers and creationists and, in their time, the smoking-as-killer deniers, play with the word ‘theory’. ‘Oh, it’s just a guess’, they say. Their alternative perspectives, however, do not stand up to the evidence. That dinosaurs existed is a theory. So is gravity, and so is the germ theory of disease, and we’re prepared to risk our lives by flying in an aeroplane or going under the surgeon’s knife based on those theories – because they are real theories that have been stress-tested. The transformation of dinosaur palaeobiology from speculation to science In this book, we have been on a journey from 1980 to the present day, and we have stopped off at some of the debates and controversies.


Quackery: A Brief History of the Worst Ways to Cure Everything by Lydia Kang, Nate Pedersen

Albert Einstein, complexity theory, germ theory of disease, helicopter parent, Honoré de Balzac, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, Louis Pasteur, placebo effect, stem cell, the scientific method, traveling salesman, Upton Sinclair, wikimedia commons, Y2K

When the students switched wards, the horrible death rates followed the medical students and their bacteria-laden hands. The physician Ignaz Semmelweis, observing this, had the staff do something simple but miraculous: wash their hands with soap and a chlorine solution. Voilà—death rates plummeted. But tragically, no one listened. In the nineteenth century, Joseph Lister built upon microbiologist Louis Pasteur’s germ theory of disease and eventually revolutionized surgery by introducing the concept of antisepsis. Many poo-pooed the idea of bacteria. An Edinburgh professor snorted, “Where are these little beasts . . . has anyone seen them yet?” Another surgeon insisted that “there is good reason to believe that the theory of M. Pasteur, upon which Lister bases his treatment, is unsound.” But Lister’s theories and the facts—there were fewer deaths when antiseptic chemicals such as carbolic acid and general aseptic cleanliness were used—eventually won out by the turn of the twentieth century.


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Deadly Choices: How the Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All by Paul A. Offit M.D.

Albert Einstein, germ theory of disease, longitudinal study, Ronald Reagan

It was a miracle—a miracle that would have made infinitely more sense if the cochlear nerve, responsible for sending nerve impulses from the ear to the brain, actually passed through the neck. Nevertheless, Palmer was convinced and a new method for treating disease—chiropractic—was born. Based on Palmer’s observation, chiropractors believe that diseases are caused by an imbalance of the flow of energy from the brain, which could be cured by manipulating the spine. At the time of Palmer’s observation, Robert Koch and others were well on their way to proving the germ theory of disease. Palmer didn’t believe it. Nor did his son Bartlett Joshua (B. J.), who became a dominant figure among his fellow chiropractors, all of whom had trained at Daniel Palmer’s school for chiropractors in Davenport. B. J. Palmer eschewed the germ theory, writing, “Chiropractors had found in every disease that is supposed to be contagious, a cause in the spine. If we had one hundred cases of smallpox, I can prove to you where, in one, you will find a subluxation [misalignment of the spine] and you will find the same condition in the other ninety-nine.


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Randomistas: How Radical Researchers Changed Our World by Andrew Leigh

Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Anton Chekhov, Atul Gawande, basic income, Black Swan, correlation does not imply causation, crowdsourcing, David Brooks, Donald Trump, ending welfare as we know it, Estimating the Reproducibility of Psychological Science, experimental economics, Flynn Effect, germ theory of disease, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, Indoor air pollution, Isaac Newton, Kickstarter, longitudinal study, loss aversion, Lyft, Marshall McLuhan, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microcredit, Netflix Prize, nudge unit, offshore financial centre, p-value, placebo effect, price mechanism, publication bias, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, recommendation engine, Richard Feynman, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Metcalfe, Ronald Reagan, statistical model, Steven Pinker, uber lyft, universal basic income, War on Poverty

Noticing that his friend’s symptoms were similar to those of many of the mothers who died, Semmelweis theorised that doctors might be infecting mothers with ‘cadaverous particles’, causing death by puerperal fever. He insisted that doctors wash their hands with chlorine from then on, and the death rate plummeted. Only thanks to Semmelweis and an accidental randomised trial did it become safer to give birth attended by a Viennese doctor than on the streets. And yet, like Lind’s findings, Semmelweis’s insistence on hand-washing was rejected by many medical experts of the time.23 The germ theory of disease was yet to be developed. Many doctors were insulted by the suggestion that the hands of gentlemen like themselves were unclean, and by the implication that they were responsible for infecting their patients. After Semmelweis left the Vienna General Hospital, chlorine handwashing was discontinued. In the mid-1800s, large elements of medicine remained profoundly unscientific. Addressing the Massachusetts Medical Society in 1860, physician Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr said, ‘I firmly believe that if the whole materia medica [body of medical knowledge], as now used, could be sunk to the bottom of the sea, it would be all the better for mankind, and all the worse for the fishes.’24 As historian David Wootton noted in Bad Medicine, his 2006 book on the history of medical missteps: ‘For 2,400 years patients have believed that doctors were doing good; for 2,300 years they were wrong.’25 * Slowly medical researchers came to rely less on theory and more on empirical tests.


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No Such Thing as a Free Gift: The Gates Foundation and the Price of Philanthropy by Linsey McGoey

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, agricultural Revolution, American Legislative Exchange Council, bitcoin, Bob Geldof, cashless society, clean water, cognitive dissonance, collapse of Lehman Brothers, colonial rule, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, crony capitalism, effective altruism, Etonian, financial innovation, Food sovereignty, Ford paid five dollars a day, germ theory of disease, hiring and firing, Howard Zinn, income inequality, income per capita, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, Joseph Schumpeter, liquidationism / Banker’s doctrine / the Treasury view, M-Pesa, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microcredit, Mitch Kapor, Mont Pelerin Society, Naomi Klein, obamacare, Peter Singer: altruism, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, price mechanism, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rent-seeking, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, school choice, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), Silicon Valley, Slavoj Žižek, Steve Jobs, strikebreaker, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, trickle-down economics, urban planning, wealth creators

In 1901, partly at the urging of his son, he established the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research, housed on a vast stretch of disused farmland bordering what came to be called York Avenue, on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, bought for $700,000. The Institute soon emerged as a global centre for medical excellence.4 Rockefeller’s own three-year-old grandson had died from Scarlet fever just months earlier, compelling him to invest more heavily in biomedical research. Thanks to advances underway in Europe, the ‘germ theory’ of disease – the idea that infections were caused by tiny organisms invisible to the human eye but discoverable under the lens of a microscope – had begun to supplant miasma theories. Miasma theories, from the Greek for ‘pollution’, suggested that ‘bad air’ was often a cause of ill-health, and so contained, as scientists might later have punned, a small germ of truth. Researchers at the Koch and Pasteur Institutes, set up in Berlin and Paris in 1891 and 1887 respectively, had been cultivating a better understanding of germ theory for nearly two decades.


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The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature by Steven Pinker

affirmative action, Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, anti-communist, British Empire, clean water, cognitive dissonance, Columbine, conceptual framework, correlation coefficient, correlation does not imply causation, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Defenestration of Prague, desegregation, epigenetics, Exxon Valdez, George Akerlof, germ theory of disease, ghettoisation, glass ceiling, Hobbesian trap, income inequality, invention of agriculture, invisible hand, Joan Didion, long peace, meta analysis, meta-analysis, More Guns, Less Crime, Murray Gell-Mann, mutually assured destruction, Norman Mailer, Peter Singer: altruism, phenotype, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Potemkin village, prisoner's dilemma, profit motive, QWERTY keyboard, Richard Feynman, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, Robert Bork, Rodney Brooks, Saturday Night Live, social intelligence, speech recognition, Stanford prison experiment, stem cell, Steven Pinker, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, the new new thing, theory of mind, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, twin studies, ultimatum game, urban renewal, War on Poverty, women in the workforce, Yogi Berra, zero-sum game

As the historian Robert Richards wrote of an alleged connection between Nazism and evolutionary biology, “If such vague similarities suffice here, we should all be hustled to the gallows.”30 Indeed, if we censored ideas that the Nazis abused, we would have to give up far more than the application of evolution and genetics to human behavior. We would have to censor the study of evolution and genetics, period. And we would have to suppress many other ideas that Hitler twisted into the foundations of Nazism: The germ theory of disease: The Nazis repeatedly cited Pasteur and Koch to argue that the Jews were like an infectious bacillus that had to be eradicated to control a contagious disease. Romanticism, environmentalism, and the love of nature: The Nazis amplified a Romantic strain in German culture that believed the Volk were a people of destiny with a mystical bond to nature and the land. The Jews and other minorities, in contrast, took root in the degenerate cities.

Foucault, Michel Fox-Genovese, Elizabeth Frank, Robert Franklin, Benjamin Frazer, James George Freedman, Jonathan Freeman, Derek free-rider problem free will French Revolution frequency-dependent selection Freud, Sigmund Friedan, Betty Friedman, Milton Furchtgott-Roth, Diana Gabriel, Peter Gage, Phineas Galbraith, John Kenneth Galileo Galilei Galton, Francis game theory Gardner, Howard Garfunkel, Art Gauguin, Paul Gazzaniga, Michael Geary, David Geertz, Clifford Gell-Mann, Murray Gelman, Susan gender, see sex differences gender feminism gender gap generative grammar genes: antisocial acts and autism and brain and crime and emergenic traits and intelligence and language and mental illness and Neel and personality and “selfish” violence and see also behavioral genetics genetically modified foods genetic variation genius genome, human in denials of human nature evolution and human complexity and number of genes in variability in germ theory of disease Gestalt Ghiglieri, Michael Ghost in the Machine determinism and genetics and neural plasticity and neuroscience and radical science defense of responsibility and right-wing support of Gibran, Kahlil Gigerenzer, Gerd Gilbert, William Gilligan, Carol Gilmore, Gary Gingrich, Newt Gintis, Herbert glass ceiling Glendon, Mary Ann Glover, Jonathan Godfather, The Godwin, William Goffman, Erving Goldberg, Tiffany F.


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Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space by Carl Sagan

Albert Einstein, anthropic principle, cosmological principle, dark matter, Dava Sobel, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, germ theory of disease, invention of the telescope, Isaac Newton, Johannes Kepler, Kuiper Belt, linked data, low earth orbit, nuclear winter, planetary scale, profit motive, scientific worldview, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, Stephen Hawking, telepresence

Perhaps it's some lost upper stage of the Saturn V Apollo Moon rocket. 142 C H A P T E R 18 THE MARSH OF CAMARINA [I]t's too late to make any improvements now. The universe is finished; the copestone is on, and the chips were carted off a million years ago. —HERMAN MELVILLE, MOBY DICK, CHAPTER 2 (1851) Camarina was a city in southern Sicily, founded by colonists from Syracuse in 598 B.C. A generation or two later, it was threatened by a pestilence—festering, some said, in the adjacent marsh. (While the germ theory of disease was certainly not widely accepted in the ancient world, there were hints-for example, Marcus Varro in the first century B. C. advised explicitly against building cities near swamps "because there are bred certain minute creatures which cannot be seen by the eyes, which float in the air and enter the body through the mouth and nose and there cause serious disease.") The danger to Camarina was great.


pages: 344 words: 100,046

The Hidden Family by Charles Stross

correlation does not imply causation, germ theory of disease, illegal immigration, out of africa, Silicon Valley, trade route

Do you need to go lie down for a bit? Maybe it’ll make less sense in the morning.” “No, no,” Miriam said absently. “Look, I’m trying to figure out what isn’t there. Like, they’ve had a couple of world wars—but fought with wooden sailing ships and airships. There’s a passage at the end of the book about the ‘miracle of corpuscular transsubstantiation’—I think they mean atomic power but I’m not sure. They’ve got the germ theory of disease and steam cars, but I didn’t see any evidence of heavier-than-air flight or antibiotics or gasoline engines. The whole industrial revolution has been delayed—they’re up to about the 1930s in electronics. And the social thing is weird. I saw an opium pipe in that pawnbroker’s, and I passed a bar selling alcohol, but they’re all wearing hats and keeping their legs covered. It’s not like our 1920s, at least not more than skin-deep.


pages: 299 words: 19,560

Utopias: A Brief History From Ancient Writings to Virtual Communities by Howard P. Segal

1960s counterculture, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, complexity theory, David Brooks, death of newspapers, dematerialisation, deskilling, energy security, European colonialism, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, future of journalism, G4S, garden city movement, germ theory of disease, Golden Gate Park, invention of the printing press, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, John Markoff, John von Neumann, knowledge economy, liberation theology, Louis Pasteur, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, means of production, Nelson Mandela, Nicholas Carr, Nikolai Kondratiev, out of africa, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, transcontinental railway, traveling salesman, union organizing, urban planning, War on Poverty, Whole Earth Catalog

It advances fundamental understandings while solving significant practical problems. Pasteur’s research “was motivated by the very practical objectives of improving industrial processes and public health. It led directly to applications that saved the French silk and wine industries, improved the preservation of wine and beer, and created effective vaccines.”46 But these applications were based on Pasteur’s breakthroughs in developing the germ theory of disease and in establishing the field of bacteriology. Hence, Stokes’ endorsement of this model of research for contemporary American scientists, engineers, and, not least, social scientists. Most importantly, Science in the National Interest ignored the point made by Billington, Vincenti, and other historians of technology that engineering has significant intellectual properties of its own separate from those of science, and that the making of things by engineers requires an intellectual discipline as taxing as the making of discoveries by scientists.


pages: 317 words: 100,414

Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction by Philip Tetlock, Dan Gardner

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, availability heuristic, Black Swan, butterfly effect, buy and hold, cloud computing, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, desegregation, drone strike, Edward Lorenz: Chaos theory, forward guidance, Freestyle chess, fundamental attribution error, germ theory of disease, hindsight bias, index fund, Jane Jacobs, Jeff Bezos, Kenneth Arrow, Laplace demon, longitudinal study, Mikhail Gorbachev, Mohammed Bouazizi, Nash equilibrium, Nate Silver, Nelson Mandela, obamacare, pattern recognition, performance metric, Pierre-Simon Laplace, place-making, placebo effect, prediction markets, quantitative easing, random walk, randomized controlled trial, Richard Feynman, Richard Thaler, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, scientific worldview, Silicon Valley, Skype, statistical model, stem cell, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, the scientific method, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Bayes, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!

Then we can confidently conclude that the treatment caused any differences in observed outcomes. It isn’t perfect. There is no perfection in our messy world. But it beats wise men stroking their chins. This seems stunningly obvious today. Randomized controlled trials are now routine. Yet it was revolutionary because medicine had never before been scientific. True, it had occasionally reaped the fruits of science like the germ theory of disease and the X-ray. And it dressed up as a science. There were educated men with impressive titles who conducted case studies and reported results in Latin-laden lectures at august universities. But it wasn’t scientific. It was cargo cult science, a term of mockery coined much later by the physicist Richard Feynman to describe what happened after American airbases from World War II were removed from remote South Pacific islands, ending the islanders’ only contact with the outside world.


pages: 378 words: 107,957

Cynical Theories: How Activist Scholarship Made Everything About Race, Gender, and Identity―and Why This Harms Everybody by Helen Pluckrose, James A. Lindsay

affirmative action, Albert Einstein, barriers to entry, battle of ideas, centre right, cognitive dissonance, colonial rule, conceptual framework, desegregation, Donald Trump, equal pay for equal work, European colonialism, feminist movement, germ theory of disease, Isaac Newton, late capitalism, meta analysis, meta-analysis, moral panic, neurotypical, phenotype, sexual politics, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, the scientific method, transatlantic slave trade, white flight, women in the workforce

The result is that the belief that society is structured of specific but largely invisible identity-based systems of power and privilege that construct knowledge via ways of talking about things is now considered by social justice scholars and activists to be an objectively true statement about the organizing principle of society. Does this sound like a metanarrative? That’s because it is. Social Justice scholarship and its educators and activists see these principles and conclusions as The Truth According to Social Justice—and they treat it as though they have discovered the analogue of the germ theory of disease, but for bigotry and oppression. The reification of the two postmodern principles means that the original postmodern radical skepticism that any knowledge can be reliable has been gradually transformed into a complete conviction that knowledge is constructed in the service of power, which is rooted in identity, and that this can be uncovered through close readings of how we use language.


The Geography of Nowhere: The Rise and Decline of America's Man-Made Landscape by James Howard Kunstler

A Pattern Language, blue-collar work, California gold rush, car-free, City Beautiful movement, corporate governance, Donald Trump, financial independence, fixed income, Ford paid five dollars a day, Frank Gehry, germ theory of disease, indoor plumbing, jitney, land tenure, mass immigration, means of production, megastructure, Menlo Park, new economy, oil shock, Peter Calthorpe, place-making, plutocrats, Plutocrats, postindustrial economy, Potemkin village, Ronald Reagan, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, Whole Earth Review, working poor, Works Progress Administration, yellow journalism

Because the nature of his business brought him into association with doctors, Haskell was keenly aware of the health hazards of city living, so he settled along the Passaic River in New Jersey and commuted to town by coach and ferry boat. But he began to suffer baffling health problems while still in his thirties and became suspicious that the salt marshes near his home were to blame. Pasteur had not yet publicized his germ theory of disease; it was still thought to be caused by "bad air. " In 1853, the architect Alexander J. Davis suggested Haskell have a look a few miles west at the heights of Orange, New Jersey, noted for its wild scenery, superior views, and crystalline air. This was the same Alexander J. Davis who had assisted Andrew Jackson Downing with the design of houses for 4 6 _ EDE N U P D A T ED Cottage Residences in 1842.


pages: 494 words: 116,739

Geek Heresy: Rescuing Social Change From the Cult of Technology by Kentaro Toyama

Albert Einstein, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, blood diamonds, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Cass Sunstein, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, computer vision, conceptual framework, delayed gratification, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, end world poverty, epigenetics, Erik Brynjolfsson, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, fundamental attribution error, germ theory of disease, global village, Hans Rosling, happiness index / gross national happiness, income inequality, invention of the printing press, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Khan Academy, Kibera, knowledge worker, liberation theology, libertarian paternalism, longitudinal study, M-Pesa, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, microcredit, mobile money, Nelson Mandela, Nicholas Carr, North Sea oil, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, pattern recognition, Peter Singer: altruism, Peter Thiel, post-industrial society, Powell Memorandum, randomized controlled trial, rent-seeking, RFID, Richard Florida, Richard Thaler, school vouchers, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Stanford marshmallow experiment, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, technoutopianism, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, Upton Sinclair, Walter Mischel, War on Poverty, winner-take-all economy, World Values Survey, Y2K

The company in question was the Unilever subsidiary Hindustan Lever Limited (HLL), and the product was soap, possibly Prahalad’s most widely cited example. Diarrhea is deadly for many children in India, but it can often be prevented by hand washing. So HLL sold Lifebuoy soap in small sachets that were affordably priced for “bottom of the pyramid” consumers. It’s one thing to sell soap, though, and it’s another to instill hand-washing habits in people who’ve never learned the germ theory of disease. HLL tried two approaches. It ran a marketing campaign designed by the Madison Avenue giant Ogilvy & Mather, and it established a public-private partnership with the Indian government. Together, HLL and the state ran a multimillion-dollar, multi-platform campaign to convince people to wash their hands. Which worked better, the corporate marketing scheme or the public-private one? By Prahalad’s own admission, “although scalability seems to be greater with the [public-private partnership], benefits to corporate sales lie with” paid marketing efforts.


pages: 677 words: 121,255

Giving the Devil His Due: Reflections of a Scientific Humanist by Michael Shermer

Alfred Russel Wallace, anthropic principle, anti-communist, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Boycotts of Israel, Chelsea Manning, clean water, clockwork universe, cognitive dissonance, Colonization of Mars, Columbine, cosmological constant, cosmological principle, creative destruction, dark matter, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Flynn Effect, germ theory of disease, gun show loophole, Hans Rosling, hedonic treadmill, helicopter parent, hindsight bias, illegal immigration, income inequality, invisible hand, Johannes Kepler, Joseph Schumpeter, laissez-faire capitalism, Laplace demon, luminiferous ether, McMansion, means of production, mega-rich, Menlo Park, moral hazard, moral panic, More Guns, Less Crime, Peter Singer: altruism, phenotype, positional goods, race to the bottom, Richard Feynman, Ronald Coase, Silicon Valley, Skype, social intelligence, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, WikiLeaks, working poor, Yogi Berra

After a while, your honor, it is the setting of man against man and creed against creed until with flying banners and beating drums we are marching backward to the glorious ages of the sixteenth century when bigots lighted fagots to burn the men who dared to bring any intelligence and enlightenment and culture to the human mind.25 In America, the First Amendment protects the right of citizens to express their opinions on anything they like, no matter how unconventional, crazy, conniving, or evil. You are free to doubt not just evolution, for example, but the Big Bang theory, vaccines, the germ theory of disease, and global warming. You can believe that JFK was assassinated by the KGB, Castro, the Mafia, Lyndon Johnson, and the Military Industrial Complex. You can contend that Princess Diana faked her death, along with Hitler and Elvis. You can even challenge the existence of God, Jesus, and the universe itself. No matter how much one may dislike someone else’s opinion – even if it is something as disturbing or potentially disruptive as denying that the Holocaust happened or that some people may not be as successful because of innate racial or gender differences – that opinion is protected by the First Amendment.


pages: 404 words: 131,034

Cosmos by Carl Sagan

Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, Arthur Eddington, clockwork universe, dematerialisation, double helix, Drosophila, Edmond Halley, Eratosthenes, Ernest Rutherford, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, invention of movable type, invention of the telescope, Isaac Newton, Johannes Kepler, Lao Tzu, Louis Pasteur, Magellanic Cloud, Mars Rover, Menlo Park, music of the spheres, pattern recognition, planetary scale, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, spice trade, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, Tunguska event

Thus he established an alternative to spontaneous generation—the notion that life could rise, in fermenting grape juice or rotting meat, entirely independent of preexisting life. It was not until the time of Louis Pasteur, two centuries later, that Huygens’ speculation was proved correct. The Viking search for life on Mars can be traced in more ways than one back to Leeuwenhoek and Huygens. They are also the grandfathers of the germ theory of disease, and therefore of much of modern medicine. But they had no practical motives in mind. They were merely tinkering in a technological society. The microscope and telescope, both developed in early seventeenth-century Holland, represent an extension of human vision to the realms of the very small and the very large. Our observations of atoms and galaxies were launched in this time and place.


pages: 611 words: 130,419

Narrative Economics: How Stories Go Viral and Drive Major Economic Events by Robert J. Shiller

agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, algorithmic trading, Andrei Shleifer, autonomous vehicles, bank run, banking crisis, basic income, bitcoin, blockchain, business cycle, butterfly effect, buy and hold, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Cass Sunstein, central bank independence, collective bargaining, computerized trading, corporate raider, correlation does not imply causation, cryptocurrency, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, debt deflation, disintermediation, Donald Trump, Edmond Halley, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, full employment, George Akerlof, germ theory of disease, German hyperinflation, Gunnar Myrdal, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Hacker Ethic, implied volatility, income inequality, inflation targeting, invention of radio, invention of the telegraph, Jean Tirole, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, litecoin, market bubble, money market fund, moral hazard, Northern Rock, nudge unit, Own Your Own Home, Paul Samuelson, Philip Mirowski, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, publish or perish, random walk, Richard Thaler, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, Satoshi Nakamoto, secular stagnation, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, speech recognition, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, stochastic process, stocks for the long run, superstar cities, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, theory of mind, Thorstein Veblen, traveling salesman, trickle-down economics, tulip mania, universal basic income, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, We are the 99%, yellow journalism, yield curve, Yom Kippur War

The polymath David Hume (1711–76) wrote in 1742: When any causes beget a particular inclination or passion, at a certain time and among a certain people, though many individuals may escape the contagion, and be ruled by passions peculiar to themselves; yet the multitude will certainly be seized by the common affection, and be governed by it in all their actions.9 Hume wrote before the germ theory of disease was established, before bacteria and viruses were identified, but many of his contemporaries understood that both disease and ideas were spread by interpersonal contact. In 1765, during the economic depression in the American colonies of the United Kingdom following the French and Indian War (Seven Years’ War),10 a letter to the printer in the New-London Gazette (Connecticut) by Alexander Windmill (apparently a pseudonym) identified an epidemic of a narrative that involved the sentence “THERE IS NO MONEY”: I take it for granted, there is not one of your readers but has heard that most melancholy sentence, repeated times without number, THERE IS NO MONEY: nor scarce one who has not himself frequently joined in this epidemic complaint.


pages: 543 words: 153,550

Model Thinker: What You Need to Know to Make Data Work for You by Scott E. Page

"Robert Solow", Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, algorithmic trading, Alvin Roth, assortative mating, Bernie Madoff, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, business cycle, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Checklist Manifesto, computer age, corporate governance, correlation does not imply causation, cuban missile crisis, deliberate practice, discrete time, distributed ledger, en.wikipedia.org, Estimating the Reproducibility of Psychological Science, Everything should be made as simple as possible, experimental economics, first-price auction, Flash crash, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, High speed trading, impulse control, income inequality, Isaac Newton, John von Neumann, Kenneth Rogoff, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, low skilled workers, Mark Zuckerberg, market design, meta analysis, meta-analysis, money market fund, Nash equilibrium, natural language processing, Network effects, p-value, Pareto efficiency, pattern recognition, Paul Erdős, Paul Samuelson, phenotype, pre–internet, prisoner's dilemma, race to the bottom, random walk, randomized controlled trial, Richard Feynman, Richard Thaler, school choice, sealed-bid auction, second-price auction, selection bias, six sigma, social graph, spectrum auction, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, Supply of New York City Cabdrivers, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Great Moderation, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, the rule of 72, the scientific method, The Spirit Level, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, urban sprawl, value at risk, web application, winner-take-all economy, zero-sum game

One reason that we see so much complexity may well be that much of our world consists of adaptive and purposive actors maneuvering on dancing landscapes. To make sense of that complexity, we need many models. Do We Patent Knowledge? Our well-being rests atop a centuries-long accumulation of knowledge that includes the laws of physics, the combustion engine, double-entry accounting, the germ theory of disease, X-rays, and HTML. Knowledge is often a public good. Knowledge is always non-rival. It may or may not be excludable. Exclusion requires verification, which is easier when a physical artifact embeds the knowledge. Verifying that someone used an algorithm or technique for solving a problem may be impossible. Verifying that someone embedded that algorithm in a software program is not. When knowledge can be excluded, we confront a choice.


India's Long Road by Vijay Joshi

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, barriers to entry, Basel III, basic income, blue-collar work, Bretton Woods, business climate, capital controls, central bank independence, clean water, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, colonial rule, congestion charging, corporate governance, creative destruction, crony capitalism, decarbonisation, deindustrialization, demographic dividend, demographic transition, Doha Development Round, eurozone crisis, facts on the ground, failed state, financial intermediation, financial repression, first-past-the-post, floating exchange rates, full employment, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, global value chain, hiring and firing, income inequality, Indoor air pollution, Induced demand, inflation targeting, invisible hand, land reform, Mahatma Gandhi, manufacturing employment, Martin Wolf, means of production, microcredit, moral hazard, obamacare, Pareto efficiency, price mechanism, price stability, principal–agent problem, profit maximization, profit motive, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, randomized controlled trial, rent-seeking, reserve currency, rising living standards, school choice, school vouchers, secular stagnation, Silicon Valley, smart cities, South China Sea, special drawing rights, The Future of Employment, The Market for Lemons, too big to fail, total factor productivity, trade liberalization, transaction costs, universal basic income, urban sprawl, working-age population

Historically, TPH has been of enormous importance in bringing about health improvements in the advanced countries, much more so than curative care. As Angus Deaton has noted, ‘The major credit for the decrease in child mortality and the resultant increase in life expectancy must go to the control of disease through public health measures. At first, this took the form of improvements in sanitation and water supplies. Eventually, science caught up with practice and the germ theory of disease was understood and gradually implemented … through … scientifically based measures. These included routine vaccination against a range of diseases and the adoption of good practices of personal and public health based on the germ theory. The improvement of public health required action by public authorities … (and) could not have been accomplished by the market alone …’.33 In India, TPH has been systematically neglected and takes up less than 10 per cent of government health expenditure.


pages: 524 words: 155,947

More: The 10,000-Year Rise of the World Economy by Philip Coggan

"Robert Solow", accounting loophole / creative accounting, Ada Lovelace, agricultural Revolution, Airbnb, airline deregulation, Andrei Shleifer, anti-communist, assortative mating, autonomous vehicles, bank run, banking crisis, banks create money, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bob Noyce, Branko Milanovic, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business cycle, call centre, capital controls, carbon footprint, Carmen Reinhart, Celtic Tiger, central bank independence, Charles Lindbergh, clean water, collective bargaining, Columbian Exchange, Columbine, Corn Laws, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, crony capitalism, currency peg, debt deflation, Deng Xiaoping, discovery of the americas, Donald Trump, Erik Brynjolfsson, European colonialism, eurozone crisis, falling living standards, financial innovation, financial intermediation, floating exchange rates, Fractional reserve banking, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, germ theory of disease, German hyperinflation, gig economy, Gini coefficient, global supply chain, global value chain, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, Haber-Bosch Process, Hans Rosling, Hernando de Soto, hydraulic fracturing, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, income inequality, income per capita, indoor plumbing, industrial robot, inflation targeting, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, job automation, John Snow's cholera map, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Kenneth Arrow, Kula ring, labour market flexibility, land reform, land tenure, Lao Tzu, large denomination, liquidity trap, Long Term Capital Management, Louis Blériot, low cost airline, low skilled workers, lump of labour, M-Pesa, Malcom McLean invented shipping containers, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Martin Wolf, McJob, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, mittelstand, moral hazard, Murano, Venice glass, Myron Scholes, Nelson Mandela, Network effects, Northern Rock, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, Paul Samuelson, popular capitalism, popular electronics, price stability, principal–agent problem, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, railway mania, Ralph Nader, regulatory arbitrage, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, Scramble for Africa, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, South China Sea, South Sea Bubble, special drawing rights, spice trade, spinning jenny, Steven Pinker, TaskRabbit, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, The Great Moderation, The inhabitant of London could order by telephone, sipping his morning tea in bed, the various products of the whole earth, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade, transcontinental railway, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, universal basic income, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, V2 rocket, Veblen good, War on Poverty, Washington Consensus, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, women in the workforce, Yom Kippur War, zero-sum game

Bismarck introduced health insurance, accident insurance and pensions to Germany in the 1880s; France brought in health insurance and childcare help in the 1890s and 1900s; and Britain offered pensions and unemployment insurance in the first decade of the 20th century. In the second half of the 19th century, life expectancy also started to make significant gains. One reason was that scientists developed the germ theory of disease, and realised the terrible effects of insanitary conditions. It took time for these theories to be accepted. In 1847, Ignaz Semmelweis, a Hungarian obstetrician, correctly identified that puerperal fever was spread by doctors, and insisted that his colleagues wash their hands. But although the death rate of new mothers fell dramatically, his theory was not widely acknowledged. Semmelweis had a nervous breakdown and was beaten to death by guards in an insane asylum, never knowing that his ideas would become widely approved.100 In 1854, John Snow, a doctor who had written about cholera transmission, successfully traced an outbreak of the disease to a water pump in London: when the pump was taken out of service, cholera cases declined.101 Between 1859 and 1870, a team led by Joseph Bazalgette created a network of sewers under London that stretched for 550 miles (885km) and connected to a network that was 13,000 miles (21,000km) in all.


pages: 529 words: 150,263

The Pandemic Century: One Hundred Years of Panic, Hysteria, and Hubris by Mark Honigsbaum

Asian financial crisis, biofilm, Black Swan, clean water, coronavirus, Donald Trump, en.wikipedia.org, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, indoor plumbing, Louis Pasteur, Mark Zuckerberg, megacity, moral panic, Pearl River Delta, Ronald Reagan, Skype, the built environment, trade route, urban renewal, urban sprawl

It was children from pristine, middle-class homes and tony areas that were at the greatest risk of developing the paralytic form of the disease—people like Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the thirty-second president of the United States, who escaped polio as a teen, only to contract the disease in 1921 at the age of thirty-nine while holidaying at Campobello island, New Brunswick. THIS IS A BOOK ABOUT the way that advances in the scientific knowledge of viruses and other infectious pathogens can blind medical researchers to these ecological and immunological insights and the epidemic lurking just around the corner. Ever since the German bacteriologist Robert Koch and his French counterpart, Louis Pasteur, inaugurated the “germ theory” of disease in the 1880s by showing that tuberculosis was a bacterial infection and manufacturing vaccines against anthrax, cholera, and rabies, scientists—and the public health officials who depend on their technologies—have dreamed of defeating the microbes of infectious disease. However, while medical microbiology and the allied sciences of epidemiology, parasitology, zoology, and, more recently, molecular biology, provide new ways of understanding the transmission and spread of novel pathogens and making them visible to clinicians, all too often these sciences and technologies have been found wanting.


pages: 807 words: 154,435

Radical Uncertainty: Decision-Making for an Unknowable Future by Mervyn King, John Kay

"Robert Solow", Airbus A320, Albert Einstein, Albert Michelson, algorithmic trading, Antoine Gombaud: Chevalier de Méré, Arthur Eddington, autonomous vehicles, availability heuristic, banking crisis, Barry Marshall: ulcers, battle of ideas, Benoit Mandelbrot, bitcoin, Black Swan, Bonfire of the Vanities, Brownian motion, business cycle, business process, capital asset pricing model, central bank independence, collapse of Lehman Brothers, correlation does not imply causation, credit crunch, cryptocurrency, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, demographic transition, discounted cash flows, disruptive innovation, diversification, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, easy for humans, difficult for computers, Edmond Halley, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, Edward Thorp, Elon Musk, Ethereum, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, experimental economics, experimental subject, fear of failure, feminist movement, financial deregulation, George Akerlof, germ theory of disease, Hans Rosling, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, income per capita, incomplete markets, inflation targeting, information asymmetry, invention of the wheel, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, Johannes Kepler, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Snow's cholera map, John von Neumann, Kenneth Arrow, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, Louis Pasteur, mandelbrot fractal, market bubble, market fundamentalism, Moneyball by Michael Lewis explains big data, Nash equilibrium, Nate Silver, new economy, Nick Leeson, Northern Rock, oil shock, Paul Samuelson, peak oil, Peter Thiel, Philip Mirowski, Pierre-Simon Laplace, popular electronics, price mechanism, probability theory / Blaise Pascal / Pierre de Fermat, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, railway mania, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, Richard Feynman, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, sealed-bid auction, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Socratic dialogue, South Sea Bubble, spectrum auction, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Tacoma Narrows Bridge, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, The Chicago School, the map is not the territory, The Market for Lemons, The Nature of the Firm, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Bayes, Thomas Davenport, Thomas Malthus, Toyota Production System, transaction costs, ultimatum game, urban planning, value at risk, World Values Survey, Yom Kippur War, zero-sum game

Pierre Fauchard, a French physician, is to dentistry what Adam Smith is to economics, and their work was broadly contemporaneous, reflecting the breadth of influence of the eighteenth-century Enlightenment. Fauchard’s assembly and extension of practical knowledge in dentistry began the shift in dental practice from the extraction of teeth to their repair. Most subsequent fundamental innovations in dentistry have resulted from the application to dentistry of advances in general science, such as the discovery of anaesthesia and the germ theory of disease. The modern dental implant is the product of research by a Swedish anatomist, Per-Ingvar Brånemark, who discovered the properties of titanium in bonding to bone. 9 A good dentist is someone who can improve the health of the patient while avoiding unnecessary pain, not someone who produces a new theory or model of dentistry. There is no such thing as a general theory of dentistry, but there is a large store of practical knowledge to which dentists have access.


pages: 348 words: 185,704

Matter by Iain M. Banks

back-to-the-land, germ theory of disease, gravity well, lateral thinking, megastructure

“Unseen,” Ferbin said contemptuously. “Unheard, untouched, unsmelled, untasted, undetected. In a word, figmented.” “Oh, we are often profoundly affected by unseeably small things, prince.” Hyrlis smiled wistfully. “I have advised rulers for whom the greatest military service I could perform had nothing to do with strategy, tactics or weapons technology; it was simply to inform them of and persuade them to accept the germ theory of disease and infection. Believing that we are surrounded by microscopic entities that profoundly and directly affect the fates of individuals and through them nations has been the first step in the ascendancy of many a great ruler. I’ve lost count of the wars I’ve seen won more by medics and engineers than mere soldiery. Such infective beings, too small to see, assuredly exist, prince, and believe me so do those designed, made and controlled by powers beyond your grasping.”


pages: 687 words: 189,243

A Culture of Growth: The Origins of the Modern Economy by Joel Mokyr

"Robert Solow", Andrei Shleifer, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, business cycle, clockwork universe, cognitive dissonance, Copley Medal, creative destruction, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, delayed gratification, deliberate practice, Deng Xiaoping, Edmond Halley, epigenetics, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial independence, framing effect, germ theory of disease, Haber-Bosch Process, hindsight bias, income inequality, information asymmetry, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jacquard loom, Jacques de Vaucanson, James Watt: steam engine, Johannes Kepler, John Harrison: Longitude, Joseph Schumpeter, knowledge economy, labor-force participation, land tenure, law of one price, Menlo Park, moveable type in China, new economy, phenotype, price stability, principal–agent problem, rent-seeking, Republic of Letters, Ronald Reagan, South Sea Bubble, statistical model, survivorship bias, the market place, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, ultimatum game, World Values Survey, Wunderkammern

This coevolution created a self-reinforcing virtuous cycle that created the rapidly growing gap between West and East in technology in a relatively short time in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.46 We will never know whether without the rise of the West, the Orient would have been able to replicate something similar, given enough time. It seems unlikely, but there is no way of knowing if they would have stumbled upon steam power or the germ theory of disease. It is true that the consensus of modern scholarship has remained of the opinion that by 1800 the bulk of output in Chinese industry employed a technology very little different from that under the Song (Richardson, 1999, pp. 54–55). At the level of the economy as a whole, this is an overstatement: Chinese agriculture adopted new crops such as peanuts and sweet potatoes, some of which were introduced by the intercontinental ecological arbitrage practiced by European explorers in the sixteenth century.


pages: 1,048 words: 187,324

Atlas Obscura: An Explorer's Guide to the World's Hidden Wonders by Joshua Foer, Dylan Thuras, Ella Morton

anti-communist, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, centre right, Charles Lindbergh, colonial rule, Colonization of Mars, cosmic microwave background, cuban missile crisis, dark matter, double helix, East Village, Exxon Valdez, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Frank Gehry, germ theory of disease, Golden Gate Park, Google Earth, Haight Ashbury, horn antenna, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, index card, Jacques de Vaucanson, Kowloon Walled City, Louis Pasteur, low cost airline, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, mutually assured destruction, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, phenotype, Pluto: dwarf planet, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transcontinental railway, Tunguska event, urban sprawl, Vesna Vulović, white picket fence, wikimedia commons, working poor

His autopsy showed a similar pathology to the women with puerperal sepsis, leading Semmelweis to conclude that it was the doctors themselves who were causing the deaths of the mothers. Semmelweis implemented a strict hand-washing policy in his clinic, and the death rate quickly fell from 18 percent to 2.2 percent. But even Semmelweis himself couldn’t explain exactly why his method worked. It would be decades before Louis Pasteur confirmed the germ theory of disease. Without this underlying explanation, Semmelweis’s discovery was largely rejected as a “mania.” Later in life, in part due to the lack of success he had in spreading his theories, Semmelweis fell into a deep depression, writing bitter letters to prominent European obstetricians in which he accused them of being ignorant murderers. In 1865, he was committed to a sanitarium, where he died of septicemia, the illness he had spent his life battling.


pages: 607 words: 185,487

Seeing Like a State: How Certain Schemes to Improve the Human Condition Have Failed by James C. Scott

agricultural Revolution, business cycle, clean water, colonial rule, commoditize, deskilling, facts on the ground, germ theory of disease, informal economy, invention of writing, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, Kenneth Arrow, land reform, land tenure, Louis Pasteur, new economy, New Urbanism, Potemkin village, price mechanism, profit maximization, road to serfdom, Silicon Valley, stochastic process, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the scientific method, Thorstein Veblen, urban decay, urban planning, urban renewal, working poor

A newspaper, even more than "agitation" before heckling or sullen crowds, creates a decidedly one-sided relationship.20 The organ is a splendid way to diffuse instructions, explain the party line, and rally the troops. Like its successor, the radio, the newspaper is a medium better suited to sending messages than to receiving them. On many occasions, Lenin and his colleagues took the threat of contamination more literally and spoke in metaphors drawn from the science of hygiene and the germ theory of disease. Thus it became possible to talk of "petit-bourgeois bacilli" and "infection."" The shift in imagery was not far-fetched, for Lenin did want to keep the party in an environment that was as sterile and germ-free as possible lest the party contract one of the many diseases lurking outside.22 Lenin's general treatment of the working class in What Is to Be Done? is strongly reminiscent of Marx's famous depiction of the smallholding French peasantry as a "sack of potatoes"-just so many "homologous" units lacking any overall structure or cohesion.


pages: 716 words: 192,143

The Enlightened Capitalists by James O'Toole

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Bernie Madoff, British Empire, business cycle, business process, California gold rush, carbon footprint, City Beautiful movement, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, desegregation, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, end world poverty, equal pay for equal work, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, garden city movement, germ theory of disease, glass ceiling, God and Mammon, greed is good, hiring and firing, income inequality, indoor plumbing, inventory management, invisible hand, James Hargreaves, job satisfaction, joint-stock company, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, Lao Tzu, longitudinal study, Louis Pasteur, Lyft, means of production, Menlo Park, North Sea oil, passive investing, Ponzi scheme, profit maximization, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, Socratic dialogue, sovereign wealth fund, spinning jenny, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, stocks for the long run, stocks for the long term, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Tim Cook: Apple, traveling salesman, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, union organizing, Vanguard fund, white flight, women in the workforce, young professional

Their brother, Robert Wood (Johnson three), joined the firm shortly after its founding, infusing it with both a dose of needed capital and medical knowledge—the latter informed by the latest thinking in the then-fast-developing field of medical science. Johnson was one of the first American disciples of Joseph Lister, the British surgeon who, in developing the art of antiseptic surgery, successfully applied Louis Pasteur’s germ theory of disease to operating room practices. Johnson had become an advocate of antiseptics after attending a lecture given by Lister in 1876, at which the great scientist described the need for sterile surgical dressings to combat infection.1 One of the first products J&J introduced under Robert Wood’s leadership was sterile medicinal plasters (forerunner of Band-Aids), followed in subsequent years by ligatures, maternity and obstetric products, and the still-marketed Johnson’s Baby Powder.


pages: 798 words: 240,182

The Transhumanist Reader by Max More, Natasha Vita-More

23andMe, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, artificial general intelligence, augmented reality, Bill Joy: nanobots, bioinformatics, brain emulation, Buckminster Fuller, cellular automata, clean water, cloud computing, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, combinatorial explosion, conceptual framework, Conway's Game of Life, cosmological principle, data acquisition, discovery of DNA, Douglas Engelbart, Drosophila, en.wikipedia.org, endogenous growth, experimental subject, Extropian, fault tolerance, Flynn Effect, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frank Gehry, friendly AI, game design, germ theory of disease, hypertext link, impulse control, index fund, John von Neumann, joint-stock company, Kevin Kelly, Law of Accelerating Returns, life extension, lifelogging, Louis Pasteur, Menlo Park, meta analysis, meta-analysis, moral hazard, Network effects, Norbert Wiener, pattern recognition, Pepto Bismol, phenotype, positional goods, prediction markets, presumed consent, Ray Kurzweil, reversible computing, RFID, Ronald Reagan, scientific worldview, silicon-based life, Singularitarianism, social intelligence, stem cell, stochastic process, superintelligent machines, supply-chain management, supply-chain management software, technological singularity, Ted Nelson, telepresence, telepresence robot, telerobotics, the built environment, The Coming Technological Singularity, the scientific method, The Wisdom of Crowds, transaction costs, Turing machine, Turing test, Upton Sinclair, Vernor Vinge, Von Neumann architecture, Whole Earth Review, women in the workforce, zero-sum game

Much of twenty-first-century biology will have to be orchestrated toward service of this goal, with evolutionary biology playing the conductor’s role. Biological immortality certainly won’t be achieved easily or abruptly, which is one reason why we have relatively little to fear with respect to its effects on society. The effective defeat of ­contagious disease in the latter part of the twentieth century came a century after Pasteur ­properly established the germ theory of disease. The evolutionary theory of aging is now ­adequately established, both mathematically and experimentally. A long struggle against the recalcitrant medical establishment and the entrenched cytogerontologists lies before us. They have the money, power, and prestige. All the evolutionists have is scientific truth. I think many of you know how this is going to play out. References Arrison, Sonia (2011) 100 Plus: How the Coming Age of Longevity Will Change Everything, from Careers and Relationships to Family and Faith.


pages: 740 words: 236,681

The Portable Atheist: Essential Readings for the Nonbeliever by Christopher Hitchens

Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, anthropic principle, Ayatollah Khomeini, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, cosmic microwave background, cuban missile crisis, David Attenborough, Edmond Halley, Georg Cantor, germ theory of disease, index card, Isaac Newton, liberation theology, Mahatma Gandhi, phenotype, risk tolerance, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Thales of Miletus, traveling salesman, trickle-down economics

Among the many disasters that could befall a person over the course of a short and difficult life, medieval Christians seemed especially concerned that a neighbor might cast a spell and thereby undermine their health or good fortune. Only the advent of science could successfully undercut such an idea, along with the fantastical displays of cruelty to which it gave rise. We must remember that it was not until the mid-nineteenth century that the germ theory of disease emerged, laying to rest much superstition about the causes of illness. Occult beliefs of this sort are clearly an inheritance from our primitive, magic-minded ancestors. The Fore people of New Guinea, for instance, besides being enthusiastic cannibals, exacted a gruesome revenge upon suspected sorcerers: Besides attending public meetings. Fore men also hunted down men they believed to be sorcerers and killed them in reprisal.


She Has Her Mother's Laugh by Carl Zimmer

23andMe, agricultural Revolution, clean water, clockwatching, cloud computing, dark matter, discovery of DNA, double helix, Drosophila, Elon Musk, epigenetics, Fellow of the Royal Society, Flynn Effect, friendly fire, Gary Taubes, germ theory of disease, Isaac Newton, longitudinal study, medical bankruptcy, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microbiome, moral panic, mouse model, New Journalism, out of africa, phenotype, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Scientific racism, statistical model, stem cell, twin studies

Even though the cities were still surrounded by productive farms, the technology did not yet exist to get affordable milk and meat to their residents. As a result, the per capita consumption of meat in the United States dropped by a third in the middle and lower classes. Americans got 2 to 4 percent fewer calories, and they consumed 8 to 10 percent less protein. Making matters even worse, the Industrial Revolution took place decades before the discovery of the germ theory of disease. On the crowded streets of American and European cities, outbreaks flared up and doctors had little idea how to stop them. By the end of the nineteenth century, things had gotten much better, and people’s height reflected the improvement. Clean water and sewer systems helped children stay healthy. Railroad networks brought high-protein food into cities at affordable prices. At the same time, the size of families shrank, making it possible for parents to provide more care to fewer children.


pages: 1,205 words: 308,891

Bourgeois Dignity: Why Economics Can't Explain the Modern World by Deirdre N. McCloskey

Airbnb, Akira Okazaki, big-box store, Black Swan, book scanning, British Empire, business cycle, buy low sell high, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, clean water, Columbian Exchange, conceptual framework, correlation does not imply causation, Costa Concordia, creative destruction, crony capitalism, dark matter, Dava Sobel, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, en.wikipedia.org, epigenetics, Erik Brynjolfsson, experimental economics, Ferguson, Missouri, fundamental attribution error, Georg Cantor, George Akerlof, George Gilder, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, God and Mammon, greed is good, Gunnar Myrdal, Hans Rosling, Henry Ford's grandson gave labor union leader Walter Reuther a tour of the company’s new, automated factory…, Hernando de Soto, immigration reform, income inequality, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, invention of writing, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Islamic Golden Age, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, John Harrison: Longitude, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, knowledge economy, labor-force participation, lake wobegon effect, land reform, liberation theology, lone genius, Lyft, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, market fundamentalism, means of production, Naomi Klein, new economy, North Sea oil, Occupy movement, open economy, out of africa, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, Pax Mongolica, Peace of Westphalia, peak oil, Peter Singer: altruism, Philip Mirowski, pink-collar, plutocrats, Plutocrats, positional goods, profit maximization, profit motive, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, refrigerator car, rent control, rent-seeking, Republic of Letters, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Scientific racism, Scramble for Africa, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, Simon Kuznets, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, spinning jenny, stakhanovite, Steve Jobs, The Chicago School, The Market for Lemons, the rule of 72, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, total factor productivity, Toyota Production System, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, uber lyft, union organizing, very high income, wage slave, Washington Consensus, working poor, Yogi Berra

“Ignorance, not hunger, is the villain of mortality history.”23 Yet one can admit on the material side that the poor eventually benefited, too, from eating better, in potatoes and tomatoes from the Columbian Exchange. The betterment was a dance between ideational and material causes. As I have argued against my allies Mokyr and Jacob, though, ideas from high science were not casual until late in the story. None of the early medical advances that Johansson speaks of had anything to do with theoretical breakthroughs. They were empirical, yes, but not deductions from biological laws, such as the germ theory of disease (itself among the earliest practical fruits of high science, yet accepted only late in the nineteenth century.) That a material base can have an influence, in other words, does not at all require that we reduce mind to matter, or indulge our tough-guy affection for realism in international relations and declare that economic growth comes out of the barrel of a gun. John Stuart Mill, writing in the 1840s on the sources of the new sympathy for the working class, noted that “ideas, unless outward circumstances conspire with them, have in general no very rapid or immediate efficacy in human affairs; and the most favorable outward circumstances may pass by, or remain inoperative, for want of ideas suitable to the conjuncture.


pages: 1,197 words: 304,245

The Invention of Science: A New History of the Scientific Revolution by David Wootton

agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, British Empire, clockwork universe, Commentariolus, commoditize, conceptual framework, Dava Sobel, double entry bookkeeping, double helix, en.wikipedia.org, Ernest Rutherford, Fellow of the Royal Society, fudge factor, germ theory of disease, Google X / Alphabet X, Hans Lippershey, interchangeable parts, invention of gunpowder, invention of the steam engine, invention of the telescope, Isaac Newton, Jacques de Vaucanson, James Watt: steam engine, Johannes Kepler, John Harrison: Longitude, knowledge economy, lateral thinking, lone genius, Mercator projection, On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres, Philip Mirowski, placebo effect, QWERTY keyboard, Republic of Letters, social intelligence, spice trade, spinning jenny, the scientific method, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions

When Hobbes says that geometricians have their authority to teach from the king, he means the king licenses people to teach geometry, and only people with a licence can teach; he does not mean that royal decree establishes what counts as a good argument in geometry. Of course the king might make a bad decision; in modern terms, he might give practitioners of homeopathy the same legal status as practitioners of the germ theory of disease, or, in seventeenth-century terms, Catholic clergy the same legal status as Protestant clergy. But his bad decision would not make bad logic or bad geometry or bad medicine, or indeed bad theology, into good logic, geometry, medicine or theology; it would simply have the effect of giving the wrong people the right to practise. What Hobbes is writing about here is not truth, but authorization.


pages: 1,199 words: 332,563

Golden Holocaust: Origins of the Cigarette Catastrophe and the Case for Abolition by Robert N. Proctor

bioinformatics, carbon footprint, clean water, corporate social responsibility, Deng Xiaoping, desegregation, facts on the ground, friendly fire, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, index card, Indoor air pollution, information retrieval, invention of gunpowder, John Snow's cholera map, language of flowers, life extension, New Journalism, optical character recognition, pink-collar, Ponzi scheme, Potemkin village, publication bias, Ralph Nader, Ronald Reagan, selection bias, speech recognition, stem cell, telemarketer, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, Upton Sinclair, Yogi Berra

Oscar Wilde in 1882 described the nation as “one long expectoration”; other visitors were astonished to find Americans spitting inside theaters, streetcars, and seemingly every other public place. Spittoons were introduced to prevent the spread of germs, and some states barred spitting anywhere but into a spittoon. In courtrooms a lawyer might have his own brass pot, as would the judge and jury. Spittoons bit the dust with the broader triumph of the germ theory of disease and fears of spreading microbes, though not without some protest. The governor of Pennsylvania in 1905 characterized spitting as “a gentleman’s constitutional right” and its banishment “an infringement of liberty.”8 Ashtrays will eventually suffer the same fate; they are already an anachronism in richer parts of the world.) Ashtrays may not seem like rocket science, but readers might be surprised to learn how many patents have been awarded for innovative designs.


pages: 1,213 words: 376,284

Empire of Things: How We Became a World of Consumers, From the Fifteenth Century to the Twenty-First by Frank Trentmann

Airbnb, Anton Chekhov, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, British Empire, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, car-free, carbon footprint, Cass Sunstein, choice architecture, clean water, collaborative consumption, collective bargaining, colonial exploitation, colonial rule, Community Supported Agriculture, cross-subsidies, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, dematerialisation, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, equity premium, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial exclusion, fixed income, food miles, full employment, germ theory of disease, global village, haute cuisine, high net worth, income inequality, index card, informal economy, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, James Watt: steam engine, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Joseph Schumpeter, Kitchen Debate, knowledge economy, labour mobility, libertarian paternalism, Livingstone, I presume, longitudinal study, mass immigration, McMansion, mega-rich, moral panic, mortgage debt, Murano, Venice glass, Naomi Klein, New Urbanism, post-industrial society, post-materialism, postnationalism / post nation state, profit motive, purchasing power parity, Ralph Nader, rent control, Richard Thaler, Right to Buy, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, Scientific racism, Scramble for Africa, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, stakhanovite, the built environment, the market place, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, trade liberalization, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, union organizing, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban sprawl, Washington Consensus, women in the workforce, working poor, young professional, zero-sum game

Washing oneself, reformers argued, was vital for civic life as well as public health: as long as the better-off reached for smelling salts when they passed one of the ‘great unwashed’, social conflict was inevitable. Yet it was not only the poor who were unclean. Three decades after cholera was identified as a waterborne disease in 1854, London’s Dr John Simon was emphatic in his sanitary handbook that many among the better-off classes, too, had yet to reach a ‘high standard of sensibility to dirt’.10 Epidemiology, the germ theory of disease and sanitary reforms had social democratic implications. Infectious disease could jump classes. No one was safe unless everyone was cleaner. This concerned public authorities, water companies, builders and landlords, but also private conduct. Regular washing meant self-respect and respect for others. Elementary schools held cleanliness checks to inculcate new habits. In France, exercises drummed into pupils the connection between hygiene, decency and love.


pages: 1,293 words: 357,735

The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance by Laurie Garrett

Albert Einstein, Berlin Wall, biofilm, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, clean water, correlation does not imply causation, discovery of penicillin, double helix, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, global village, indoor plumbing, invention of air conditioning, John Snow's cholera map, land reform, Live Aid, Louis Pasteur, Marshall McLuhan, mass incarceration, megacity, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela, New Urbanism, phenotype, price mechanism, Ralph Nader, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, South China Sea, the scientific method, trade route, transfer pricing, upwardly mobile, urban renewal, urban sprawl, Zimmermann PGP

Lappé, Germs That Won’t Die (Garden City, NY: Anchor Press, 1982); and S. B. Levy. The Antibiotic Paradox (New York: Plenum Press, 1992). 14 J. Lederberg and E. M. Lederberg, “Replica Plating and Indirect Selection,” Journal of Bacteriology 63 (1952): 399–406. 15 Webster’s New Twentieth Century Dictionary Unabridged (New York: Collins World, 1975). 16 J. Farley, “Parasites and the Germ Theory of Disease,” in Framing Disease, eds. C. E. Rosenberg and J. Golden (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1992), 33–49. 17 Among the monkey species known to serve as malaria reservoirs in Africa, Asia, and South America are P. knowlesi, P. cynomolgi, P. brasilianum, P. invi, P. scwetzi, and P. simium. 18 Two well-organized, excellent texts provide a quick thumbnail description of all infectious diseases prominent on the planet at this time.


Wealth and Poverty of Nations by David S. Landes

"Robert Solow", Admiral Zheng, affirmative action, agricultural Revolution, Atahualpa, Ayatollah Khomeini, Bartolomé de las Casas, British Empire, business cycle, Cape to Cairo, clean water, colonial rule, Columbian Exchange, computer age, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, deskilling, European colonialism, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial intermediation, Francisco Pizarro, germ theory of disease, glass ceiling, illegal immigration, income inequality, Index librorum prohibitorum, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, invention of movable type, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, John Harrison: Longitude, joint-stock company, Just-in-time delivery, Kenneth Arrow, land tenure, lateral thinking, mass immigration, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, MITM: man-in-the-middle, Monroe Doctrine, Murano, Venice glass, new economy, New Urbanism, North Sea oil, out of africa, passive investing, Paul Erdős, Paul Samuelson, Philip Mirowski, rent-seeking, Right to Buy, Scramble for Africa, Simon Kuznets, South China Sea, spice trade, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transaction costs, transatlantic slave trade, Vilfredo Pareto, zero-sum game

Its role goes back almost to the beginning o f the European presence: Europeans, physically unprepared for the special rigors and dangers o f warm climes, brought doctors with them. In those early days, of course, ignorant if well-intentioned physicians did more harm than g o o d ; but they did put people out o f their misery. N o t until the second half o f the nineteenth century did the germ theory of disease lay the basis for directed research and effective prevention and treat­ ment. Before that, one relied on guesswork empiricism and imagina­ tion. These techniques, fortunately, were not haphazard. The stress on observation and the reality principle—you can believe what you see, so long as you see what I see—paid off beyond understanding. Take the biggest killer worldwide: malaria. Before the discovery of microbic pathogens, physicians attributed "fevers" to marshy mias­ mas—wrong cause, but not an unreasonable inference from proximity.