microcosm e coli and the new science of life

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Microcosm

Author : Carl Zimmer
ISBN : 9780307377562
Genre : Science
File Size : 84. 38 MB
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A Best Book of the YearSeed Magazine • Granta Magazine • The Plain-DealerIn this fascinating and utterly engaging book, Carl Zimmer traces E. coli's pivotal role in the history of biology, from the discovery of DNA to the latest advances in biotechnology. He reveals the many surprising and alarming parallels between E. coli's life and our own. And he describes how E. coli changes in real time, revealing billions of years of history encoded within its genome. E. coli is also the most engineered species on Earth, and as scientists retool this microbe to produce life-saving drugs and clean fuel, they are discovering just how far the definition of life can be stretched. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Microcosm

Author : Carl Zimmer
ISBN : 9781446455036
Genre : Science
File Size : 88. 63 MB
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In 1946, a twenty-year-old medical school student called Joshua Lederberg decided to find out whether microbes make love. Lederberg was motivated not by a displaced libido, but by scientific ambition. At the age of seven, he had declared that he hoped to become 'like Einstein' and to 'discover a few things in science.' The 'few things' Lederberg discovered would revolutionise modern science and earn him a Nobel Prize. He chose to observe the breeding habits of a certain bacterium called Escherichia coli, better known as E coli. His experiments used defective E coli strains lacking the essential molecules to reproduce by cloning which should, by rights, perish in the petri dish. But slowly, a few colonies of survivors began to spread accross the dishes. The only possible explanation for their survival was that they were a product of sex. Not only had Lederberg proved that bacteria have sex, he had also proved they have genes. Since then, a bacterium that was once nothing more than a humble resident of the human gut has become our best guide to what it means to be alive. Most of us might only know E coli for its lethal strain that causes food poisoning, but Zimmer uses E coli as a prism to understand what life is, what it was, and what it will become. We learn how E coli microbes talk to each other, how studies of their evolution represent the most powerful evidence in support of natural selection, and how they might just explain life on other planets...

Microcosm

Author : Carl Zimmer
ISBN : 9780375424304
Genre : Science
File Size : 33. 6 MB
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Addresses the fundamental question of what it means to be alive from the perspective of a microbe, E. coli, that exists within all human beings, examining the germ's evolution and its important role in the history of biology.

At The Water S Edge

Author : Carl Zimmer
ISBN : 9780684856230
Genre : Science
File Size : 73. 7 MB
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AT THE WATER'S EDGE is a beautifully-written, accessible account of the greatest evolutionary mystery of all. We all know about evolution but it still seems absurd that our ancestors were fish. How did we ever get ashore? How did we make legs, arms and our extremely complex intelligence? Darwin's natural selection was the key to solving generation-to-generation evolution - microevolution - but it could only point us to an explanation still to come of the engines of macroevolution, the transformation of body shapes across millions of years. Carl Zimmer takes the reader on a fascinating quest to understand their beginnings, from pre-Darwinian scientists struggling to interpret early fossil discoveries to latter day geneticists, from whale graveyards in the deserts of Egypt to an amazing find in a forgotten specimen drawer at Oxford University. Including all the latest scientific research, AT THE WATER'S EDGE reveals how macroevolution works and, in doing so, provides a comprehensive, lucid and authoritative answer to the mystery of how nature actually made itself.

A Planet Of Viruses

Author : Carl Zimmer
ISBN : 9780226320267
Genre : Science
File Size : 30. 13 MB
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The past year has been one of viral panic—panic about viruses, that is. Through headlines, public health warnings, and at least one homemade hazmat suit, we were reminded of the powerful force of viruses. They are the smallest living things known to science, yet they can hold the entire planet in their sway. A Planet of Viruses is Carl Zimmer’s eye-opening look at the hidden world of viruses. Zimmer, the popular science writer and author of National Geographic’s award-winning blog The Loom, has updated this edition to include the stories of new outbreaks, such as Ebola, MERS, and chikungunya virus; new scientific discoveries, such as a hundred-million-year-old virus that infected the common ancestor of armadillos, elephants, and humans; and new findings that show why climate change may lead to even deadlier outbreaks. Zimmer’s lucid explanations and fascinating stories demonstrate how deeply humans and viruses are intertwined. Viruses helped give rise to the first life-forms, are responsible for many of our most devastating diseases, and will continue to control our fate for centuries. Thoroughly readable, and as reassuring as it is frightening, A Planet of Viruses is a fascinating tour of a formidable hidden world.

Parasite Rex

Author : Carl Zimmer
ISBN : 9780743200110
Genre : Science
File Size : 24. 80 MB
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A look inside the often hidden world of parasites turns the clock back to the beginning of life on Earth to answer key questions about these highly evolved and resilient life forms.

March Of The Microbes

Author : John L. Ingraham
ISBN : 0674035828
Genre : Nature
File Size : 76. 90 MB
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A Choice Outstanding Academic Title Renowned microbiologist John Ingraham rescues the supremely important and ubiquitous microorganisms from their unwonted obscurity by showing us how we can, in fact, see and appreciate them.

Dark Banquet

Author : Bill Schutt
ISBN : 9780307381132
Genre : Nature
File Size : 82. 91 MB
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A look inside the world of animals that feed on blood, examining the ecological roles and life cycles of the vampire bat, leeches, ticks, mites, bedbugs, and a feared vampire fish known as the candiru.

Virus

Author : Marilyn J. Roossinck
ISBN : 9781400883257
Genre : Science
File Size : 38. 78 MB
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This stunningly illustrated book provides a rare window into the amazing, varied, and often beautiful world of viruses. Contrary to popular belief, not all viruses are bad for you. In fact, several are beneficial to their hosts, and many are crucial to the health of our planet. Virus offers an unprecedented look at 101 incredible microbes that infect all branches of life on Earth—from humans and other animals to insects, plants, fungi, and bacteria. Featuring hundreds of breathtaking color images throughout, this guide begins with a lively and informative introduction to virology. Here readers can learn about the history of this unique science, how viruses are named, how their genes work, how they copy and package themselves, how they interact with their hosts, how immune systems counteract viruses, and how viruses travel from host to host. The concise entries that follow highlight important or interesting facts about each virus. Learn about the geographic origins of dengue and why old tires and unused pots help the virus to spread. Read about Ebola, Zika, West Nile, Frog virus 3, the Tulip breaking virus, and many others—how they were discovered, what their hosts are, how they are transmitted, whether or not there is a vaccine, and much more. Each entry is easy to read and includes a graphic of the virus, and nearly every entry features a colorized image of the virus as seen through the microscope. Written by a leading authority, this handsomely illustrated guide reveals the unseen wonders of the microbial world. It will give you an entirely new appreciation for viruses.

The Lives Of A Cell

Author : Lewis Thomas
ISBN : 9780140047431
Genre : Science
File Size : 64. 11 MB
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A physician and cancer researcher shares his personal observations on the uniformity, diversity, interdependence, and strange powers of the earth's life forms

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