Search results for: the-vaccine-race-science-politics-and-the-human-costs-of-defeating-disease

The Vaccine Race

Author : Meredith Wadman
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"A real jewel of science history...brims with suspense and now-forgotten catastrophe and intrigue...Wadman’s smooth prose calmly spins a surpassingly complicated story into a real tour de force."—The New York Times “Riveting . . . [The Vaccine Race] invites comparison with Rebecca Skloot's 2007 The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.”—Nature The epic and controversial story of a major breakthrough in cell biology that led to the conquest of rubella and other devastating diseases. Until the late 1960s, tens of thousands of American children suffered crippling birth defects if their mothers had been exposed to rubella, popularly known as German measles, while pregnant; there was no vaccine and little understanding of how the disease devastated fetuses. In June 1962, a young biologist in Philadelphia, using tissue extracted from an aborted fetus from Sweden, produced safe, clean cells that allowed the creation of vaccines against rubella and other common childhood diseases. Two years later, in the midst of a devastating German measles epidemic, his colleague developed the vaccine that would one day wipe out homegrown rubella. The rubella vaccine and others made with those fetal cells have protected more than 150 million people in the United States, the vast majority of them preschoolers. The new cells and the method of making them also led to vaccines that have protected billions of people around the world from polio, rabies, chicken pox, measles, hepatitis A, shingles and adenovirus. Meredith Wadman’s masterful account recovers not only the science of this urgent race, but also the political roadblocks that nearly stopped the scientists. She describes the terrible dilemmas of pregnant women exposed to German measles and recounts testing on infants, prisoners, orphans, and the intellectually disabled, which was common in the era. These events take place at the dawn of the battle over using human fetal tissue in research, during the arrival of big commerce in campus labs, and as huge changes take place in the laws and practices governing who “owns” research cells and the profits made from biological inventions. It is also the story of yet one more unrecognized woman whose cells have been used to save countless lives. With another frightening virus--measles--on the rise today, no medical story could have more human drama, impact, or urgency than The Vaccine Race.


Author : Adam Tooze
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FINALIST FOR THE ORWELL PRIZE FOR POLITICAL WRITING 2022 THE TIMES BOOKS OF THE YEAR 2021 'A complex story, which Tooze tells with clarity and verve... The world is unlikely to be treated to a better account of the economics of the pandemic' The Times 'A seriously impressive book, both endlessly quotable and rigorously analytical' Oliver Bullough, The Guardian From the author of Crashed comes a gripping short history of how Covid-19 ravaged the global economy, and where it leaves us now When the news first began to trickle out of China about a new virus in December 2019, risk-averse financial markets were alert to its potential for disruption. Yet they could never have predicted the total economic collapse that would follow in COVID-19's wake, as stock markets fell faster and harder than at any time since 1929, currencies across the world plunged, investors panicked, and even gold was sold. In a matter of weeks, the world's economy was brought to an abrupt halt by governments trying to contain a spiralling public health catastrophe. Flights were grounded; supply chains broken; industries from tourism to oil to hospitality collapsed overnight, leaving hundreds of millions of people unemployed. Central banks responded with unprecedented interventions, just to keep their economies on life-support. For the first time since the second world war, the entire global economic system contracted. This book tells the story of that shutdown. We do not yet know how this story ends, or what new world we will find on the other side. In this fast-paced, compelling and at times shocking analysis, Adam Tooze surveys the wreckage, and looks at where we might be headed next.

Vaccines as Technology

Author : Ana Santos Rutschman
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The COVID-19 pandemic served as a powerful wake-up call, highlighting our collective need for the effective development and equitable distribution of new vaccines, in addition to widespread administration of existing ones. The current models of production and allocation of vaccines against emerging pathogens, which rely on predominantly market-driven mechanisms, are largely at odds with public health needs. This book is the first to explore the entire arc of vaccine development and distribution, from the decisions about allocation of vaccine R&D money to allocation and administration of vaccines resulting from the R&D process. It explains key concepts and problems in vaccine regulation, intellectual property, technology transfer, and international relations, making complex material accessible to a non-specialist audience. Analyzing the impact of COVID-19, the book also covers several other vaccine races, as well as future directions in vaccine development and allocation.

The Rinderpest Campaigns

Author : Amanda Kay McVety
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Amanda Kay McVety has written the first history of the international effort to eradicate rinderpest - a devastating cattle disease - which began in the 1940s and ended in 2011. Rinderpest is the only other disease besides smallpox to have been eradicated, but very few people in the United States know about it, because it did not infect humans and never broke out in North America. In other parts of the world, however, rinderpest was a serious economic and social burden and the struggle against it was a critical part of the effort to fight poverty and hunger globally. McVety follows the deployment of rinderpest vaccines around the globe, exploring the role of the environment in the understanding of development, internationalism, and national security. She expands the standard Cold War narratives to show how these concepts were framed not only by economic and political concerns, but also by biological ones.

Anti Vax

Author : Bernice L. Hausman
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Antivaxxers are crazy. That is the perception we all gain from the media, the internet, celebrities, and beyond, writes Bernice Hausman in Anti/Vax, but we need to open our eyes and ears so that we can all have a better conversation about vaccine skepticism and its implications. Hausman argues that the heated debate about vaccinations and whether to get them or not is most often fueled by accusations and vilifications rather than careful attention to the real concerns of many Americans. She wants to set the record straight about vaccine skepticism and show how the issues and ideas that motivate it—like suspicion of pharmaceutical companies or the belief that some illness is necessary to good health—are commonplace in our society. Through Anti/Vax, Hausman wants to engage public health officials, the media, and each of us in a public dialogue about the relation of individual bodily autonomy to the state's responsibility to safeguard citizens' health. We need to know more about the position of each side in this important stand-off so that public decisions are made through understanding rather than stereotyped perceptions of scientifically illiterate antivaxxers or faceless bureaucrats. Hausman reveals that vaccine skepticism is, in part, a critique of medicalization and a warning about the dangers of modern medicine rather than a glib and gullible reaction to scaremongering and misunderstanding.


Author : Lisa Idzikowski
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Give your readers a comprehensive resource that will allow them to form intelligent opinions on a perennial, hot-button topic. Since the smallpox vaccine was invented in 1796, vaccination has played an essential role in eradicating a number of diseases, including polio, measles, tetanus, and smallpox. Despite its effectiveness at preventing disease outbreaks, vaccination has been met with resistance. It has on rare occasions caused patients to become injured or ill, encouraging some to deduce that they are not worth the risk. Questions about whether vaccines are linked to autism also abound. While universal vaccination would help to eliminate diseases, the question of whether it violates individual liberty merits consideration. The prospective future of vaccination is also discussed.

Immunology and Vaccination An Issue of Veterinary Clinics of North America Small Animal Practice

Author : Amy Stone
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This issue of Veterinary Clinics of North America: Small Animal Practice focuses on Immunology and Vaccination, with topics including: Recent Advances In Vaccine Technologies; Immune System's Response to Vaccination; Current Vaccine Strategies for Dogs and Cats; Update on Therapeutic Vaccines; Common and Newly Recognized Autoimmune Diseases; Adverse Response to Vaccination; Vaccines in Shelters and Group Settings; Evidence vs Belief in Vaccine Recommendations; Effects of Aging on the Immune Response; and Use of Antibody Titer to Determine the Need for Vaccination.

Reproductive Injustice

Author : Dana-Ain Davis
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A troubling study of the role that medical racism plays in the lives of black women who have given birth to premature and low birth weight infants Black women have higher rates of premature birth than other women in America. This cannot be simply explained by economic factors, with poorer women lacking resources or access to care. Even professional, middle-class black women are at a much higher risk of premature birth than low-income white women in the United States. Dána-Ain Davis looks into this phenomenon, placing racial differences in birth outcomes into a historical context, revealing that ideas about reproduction and race today have been influenced by the legacy of ideas which developed during the era of slavery. While poor and low-income black women are often the “mascots” of premature birth outcomes, this book focuses on professional black women, who are just as likely to give birth prematurely. Drawing on an impressive array of interviews with nearly fifty mothers, fathers, neonatologists, nurses, midwives, and reproductive justice advocates, Dána-Ain Davis argues that events leading up to an infant’s arrival in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), and the parents’ experiences while they are in the NICU, reveal subtle but pernicious forms of racism that confound the perceived class dynamics that are frequently understood to be a central factor of premature birth. The book argues not only that medical racism persists and must be considered when examining adverse outcomes—as well as upsetting experiences for parents—but also that NICUs and life-saving technologies should not be the only strategies for improving the outcomes for black pregnant women and their babies. Davis makes the case for other avenues, such as community-based birthing projects, doulas, and midwives, that support women during pregnancy and labor are just as important and effective in avoiding premature births and mortality.

Library Lin s Curated Collection of Superlative Nonfiction

Author : Linda Maxie
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Trust a librarian to help you find books you’ll want to read Library Lin’s Curated Collection of Superlative Nonfiction is a librarian’s A-list of nonfiction books organized by subject area—just like a library. Linda Maxie (Library Lin) combed through 65 best books lists going back a century. She reviewed tens of thousands of books, sorted them according to the Dewey Decimal Classification system, and selected an entire library’s worth for you to browse without leaving home. Here you’ll find • Summaries of outstanding titles in every subject • Suggestions for locating reading material specific to your needs and interests In this broad survey of all the nonfiction categories, you will find titles on everything from the A-bomb to Zen Buddhism. You might find yourself immersed in whole subject areas that you never thought you’d be interested in.

A Good Time to Be Born How Science and Public Health Gave Children a Future

Author : Perri Klass
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The fight against child mortality that transformed parenting, doctoring, and the way we live. Only one hundred years ago, in even the world’s wealthiest nations, children died in great numbers—of diarrhea, diphtheria, and measles, of scarlet fever and tuberculosis. Throughout history, culture has been shaped by these deaths; diaries and letters recorded them, and writers such as Louisa May Alcott, W. E. B. Du Bois, and Eugene O’Neill wrote about and mourned them. Not even the powerful and the wealthy could escape: of Abraham and Mary Lincoln’s four children, only one survived to adulthood, and the first billionaire in history, John D. Rockefeller, lost his beloved grandson to scarlet fever. For children of the poor, immigrants, enslaved people and their descendants, the chances of dying were far worse. The steady beating back of infant and child mortality is one of our greatest human achievements. Interweaving her own experiences as a medical student and doctor, Perri Klass pays tribute to groundbreaking women doctors like Rebecca Lee Crumpler, Mary Putnam Jacobi, and Josephine Baker, and to the nurses, public health advocates, and scientists who brought new approaches and scientific ideas about sanitation and vaccination to families. These scientists, healers, reformers, and parents rewrote the human experience so that—for the first time in human memory—early death is now the exception rather than the rule, bringing about a fundamental transformation in society, culture, and family life.