Monkey Heart Attacks and Barnacle Penises: My take on the new book "Zoobiquity"

By Carl Zimmer | June 17, 2012 3:39 pm

A new book is out, called Zoobiquity: What Animals Can Teach Us About Health and the Science of Healing, coauthored by cardiologist Barbara Natterson-Horowitz and science writer Kathryn Bowers. They take a look at the surprising parallels between animal and human health. The Daily Beast asked me to review it, and you can read my piece here.

The facts that animals and humans share an evolutionary heritage, and that we can gain medical insights through a comparison between species, are not new. And Zoobiquity contains some misconceptions about how evolution works and how to analyze it. Nevertheless, I think the book well-worth reading. I learned a lot from it about things ranging from cancerous rhino horns to anorexic pigs.

Check out my review here. (You can also read a fairly long excerpt from the book in the New York Times here.)

Comments (2)

Links to this Post

  1. Darwiniana » Zoobiquity | June 18, 2012
  1. Interesting point about large animals and long-lived animals being more vulnerable to cancer in theory. Whales are an extreme, but there are lots of other species we could examine. Giant tortoises and elephants, for example.

    Just googled around. Apparently the issue is called Peto’s paradox, and somebody has their own explanation, that some cancer cells evolve to attack the original tumor, if the organism is big enough to survive the initial tumor growth:

    http://icb.oxfordjournals.org/content/47/2/317.full

NEW ON DISCOVER
OPEN
CITIZEN SCIENCE
ADVERTISEMENT

Discover's Newsletter

Sign up to get the latest science news delivered weekly right to your inbox!

The Loom

A blog about life, past and future. Written by DISCOVER contributing editor and columnist Carl Zimmer.

About Carl Zimmer

Carl Zimmer writes about science regularly for The New York Times and magazines such as DISCOVER, which also hosts his blog, The LoomHe is the author of 12 books, the most recent of which is Science Ink: Tattoos of the Science Obsessed.

ADVERTISEMENT

See More

ADVERTISEMENT
Collapse bottom bar
+

Login to your Account

X
E-mail address:
Password:
Remember me
Forgot your password?
No problem. Click here to have it e-mailed to you.

Not Registered Yet?

Register now for FREE. Registration only takes a few minutes to complete. Register now »