Deadly Companions : How Microbes Shaped Our History Essay

1461 Words Dec 7th, 2015 null Page
“About 4 billion years ago microbes appeared on earth and about 130 years ago the first microbe was discovered” (Crawford ix). Microorganisms are the simplest and smallest form of living things on earth and they are very powerful. Microbes can be used ecologically, they are also pathogenic and have helped in the medical field to create antibiotics. The author, Dorothy H. Crawford is Professor of Medical Microbiology and Assistant Principal for the Public Understanding of Medicine at the University of Edinburgh. She is also the author of The Invisible Enemy: A Natural History of Viruses, and she was awarded an OBE in 2005 for services to medicine and higher education. Microbes existed on earth far before humans, and since microbes were discovered to be pathogenic, humans have tried to control the spread of diseases caused by them. In the book, Deadly Companions: how microbes shaped our history, Crawford explains how different microbes have shaped our history through epidemics and how humans have dealt with many of the diseases. She also explains how the microbes have evolved and shaped human history. Black Death, smallpox, syphilis, SARS, and malaria are among some of the diseases she talks about and evaluates the impacts they have had in the evolution of the human race. Microorganisms are everywhere, they exist in every living matter on earth. Not all of them are pathogenic, in fact most of them are useful and help shape the earth. For example, certain bacteria that help…

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