The Story of Taxol : Nature and Politics in the Pursuit of an Anti-Cancer Drug
Taxol is arguably the most celebrated, talked-about and controversial natural product in recent years. It is celebrated because of its efficacy as an anti-cancer drug and because its discovery has provided powerful support for policies concerned with biodiversity; talked about because in the late 1980s and early 1990s the American public was bombarded with news reports and special programmes about the molecule and its host, the Pacific yew; and controversial because during the early 1990s the drug and the tree became embroiled in a number of very sensitive political issues with wide implications for the conduct of public policy. The Story of Taxol tells this story.
- Hardback | 298 pages
- 162.56 x 238.76 x 27.94mm | 476.27g
- 15 Apr 2015
- CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
- Cambridge, United Kingdom
- 8 b/w illus.
'It is carefully researched and detailed, and as someone who was at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) during part of the development of Taxol, I found it factually accurate.' Vincent T. DeVita, Jr, New England Journal of Medicine '... insightful ... This book is suited for practically all researchers, faculty, and professionals whatever their personal interests, since it contains something for nearly everyone.' Choice 'This is a very readable and reliable account of the development of Taxol.' David G. I. Kingston, Chemical and Engineering News '... will surely be one of the success stories of the late twentieth century.' Chemistry in Britian '... the book is to be welcomed. It is a meticulously researched and conceptually sophisticated work that follows Taxol's path from the forest to the marketplace.' Journal of History of Medicine '... highly readable book ...' British Journal for the History of Science '... this is an exciting and well written book ... Last but not least, it is fun to read.' Journal of Ethnopharmacology '... a good read, and contains much that historians of chemistry, as well as historians of technology, business and medicine, will find of use and interest.' Ambix
Table of contents
Acknowledgements; Abbreviations; Introduction; Part I. Agents: 1. Cancer chemotherapy: plant knowledge and practice; Part II. Practices: 2. Act I: 1962-75; 3. Act II: 1976-83; 4. Act III: 1984-9; Part III. Controversies: 5. The politics of exclusivity and the business of taxol; 6. The political life (and death) of Taxus Brevifolia; References and bibliography; Index.