Microbes and Man

Microbes are everywhere. Normally invisible, they are abundant in the air we breathe, in soil, in water, on our skin and hair, in our mouths and intestines, and on and in the food we eat. They make the soil fertile; they clean up the environment; they change, often improve, our food; some protect us from less desirable microbes. Yet most people are scarcely aware that they exist--except when they become ill. Microbes, as "germs", are widely regarded as nasty--unpopular because a few can cause disease and a few can spoil food. Yet collectively microbes present a fascinating world of miniscule creatures, who together encompass all the processes of which terrestrial life is capable: creatures who have profound effects on our lives and surroundings. Extensively updated to include such topics as CJD, genetic manipulation, and gene therapy, this edition describes the extraordinary impact that the microbial community has on our everyday lives in an accessible and easy to read style.


"...will be especially valuable as an introduction for those intending to study microbiology. It describes in detail the world of microbes and their influence on man and the environment, such as nutrition, production, decay and pollution, evolution, and the future." Biosis

"A strength of this book is that it appeals to self-interest in bringing out, frequently in personal terms, the power of microbes to affect daily life and the future. The book should be made available in high school, college, and public libraries. The practicing microbiologist would enjoy the sweeping overview of his science as it might be seen by the lay reader..." Soil Science

"...pleasurable and informative. The reader comes away from this book with a wealth of information about microbes and a great deal of respect for these tiny creatures...This book is a most useful reference for any teacher of life science. Readings from the book could be assigned to honors level high school or AP biology and chemistry students, though its fine print and dense material make it most appropriate as a content review for the secondary or college level educatory." NSTA Recommends

"The book is illuminated by the author's enthusiasm for and wide knowledge of his subject. The reader can learn much of the progress and conditions of British microbiology...the text is very readable, and many examples are of very recent date. The book can be strongly recommended to non-specialists and experienced microbiologists as an impressive and exciting overall view of our subject." Canadian Society of Microbiologists

From a previous edition '… an excellent read for the uninitiated and professional alike.' SGM Quarterly

'This book is highly enjoyable, as it is readable, thought-provoking and at times quietly amusing.' Educational Media