Medicine Quest by Mark J. Plotkin
In Search of Nature's Healing Secrets

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A world renowned ethnobotanist combs the far corners of the planet to unveil nature's pharmacy and detail how scientists are harvesting it to conquer devastating diseases

In Medicine Quest, Mark Plotkin goes beyond Tales of a Shaman's Apprentice, his critically acclaimed exploration of the Amazonian jungles that has become a classic of its genre. He transports readers from freezing Arctic wastes to twilit ocean depths to burning jungles, where the race is on to find new medicines for intractable diseases like AIDS, cancer, and diabetes. It is a quest powered by the desperation of the ill and the compassion of those who would cure them.

Plotkin highlights discoveries that are already producing stunning leads in the laboratory: painkillers from the skin of rain-forest frogs, anticoagulants from leech saliva, and antitumor agents from snake venom. This entertaining weave of medicine, ecology, ethnobotany, history, exploration, and adventure will thrill scientists, naturalists, adventurers, and the exploding number of Americans who spend $10 billion a year on medicine in their thirst for nature's healing secrets.

About Mark J. Plotkin

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Mark J. Plotkin, Ph.D., was born and raised in New Orleans and educated at Harvard, Yale, and Tufts. Trained as an ethnobotanist, he has done extensive research throughout the lowlands of tropical South America. He currently serves as president of the Amazon Conservation Team and research associate at the Smithsonian Institution's Museum of Natural History. His research has been featured in Life, Newsweek, Smithsonian, Time, and The New York Times as well as PBS's Nova and the Academy Award-winning documentary "Amazon.
Published March 27, 2000 by Viking Adult. 256 pages
Genres: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Parenting & Relationships. Non-fiction

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A general look around at some of the strange and mysterious natural substances that ancient cultures have used for healing, coupled with a plea for their preservation.

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Plotkin expands here on his earlier work, Tales of a Shaman's Apprentice, by giving an overview of how plants and animals are being utilized to treat disease.

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