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A planet of viruses

"As fine a science essayist as we have."New York Times Book Review

"Carl Zimmer is one of the best science writers we have today. A Planet of Viruses is an important primer on the viruses living within and around all of ussometimes funny, other times shocking, and always accessible. Whether discussing the common cold and flu, little-known viruses that attack bacteria or protect oceans, or the world's viral future as seen through our encounters with HIV or SARS, Zimmer's writing is lively, knowledgeable, and graced with poetic touches."Rebecca Skloot, author of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

A Planet of Viruses, published this month by the University of Chicago Press, explores this hidden world of viruses. Carl Zimmer, a popular science writer and author of Discover magazine's award-winning blog The Loom, presents the latest research on how viruses helped give rise to the first life-forms, how viruses are producing new diseases, how we can harness viruses for our own ends, and how viruses will continue to control our fate for years to come. In this eye-opening tour through the frontiers of biology we learn that some treatments for the common cold do more harm to us than good; that the world's oceans are home to an astonishing 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 viruses; and that the evolution of HIV is now in overdrive, spawning more mutated strains than we care to imagine.

Coinciding with the release of A Planet of Viruses, Carl Zimmer will host TRAFFIC, an exchange of thoughts among leading figures in the sciences and humanities on the University of Chicago Press blog. Beginning today, May 6 and continuing every Friday until the end of the month, Zimmer will answer questions, respond to comments, and collaborate with noted virologists, immunologists, and science journalists to discuss some of the most pertinent aspects of his ongoing research. Guests include acclaimed journalist and science writer Richard Preston, inventor and Novophage founder Timothy Lu, microbiology and marine science expert Sallie Chisholm, and W. Ian Lipkin, the director of the Center for Infection and Immunity.


Contact: Liz Fischer
University of Chicago Press Journals

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