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Genius, Greed, and Madness in the World of Science
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- Audiobook Download (Unabridged)
- ebook $15.99 $20.99 CAD
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Candace Pert stood at the dawn of three revolutions: the women’s movement, integrative health, and psychopharmacology. A scientific prodigy, she was 30 years ahead of her time, preaching a holistic, interdisciplinary approach to healthcare and medicine long before yoga hit the mainstream and “wellness” took root in our vernacular. Her bestselling book Molecules of Emotion made her the mother of the Mind/Body Revolution, launching a paradigm shift in medicine. Deepak Chopra credits her with creating his career, and he said as much in his eulogy at her funeral.
Candace began her career as an unbridled maverick. In 1972, as a 26-year-old graduate student at Johns Hopkins, she discovered the opiate receptor, revolutionizing her field and enabling pharmacologists to design new classifications of drugs from Prozac to Viagra to Percocet and OxyContin. The tragic irony of her breakthrough, touted as the first step to end heroin addiction, is that it helped spawn a virulent epidemic of drug dependence. Facing the largest public health crisis of the 21st century, Candace was incensed that the Hippocratic oath—“first, do no harm”—would succumb to greed, and as witness to this abuse of power, she was one of few scientists courageous enough to protest.
Later, as Chief of Brain Biochemistry at the National Institutes of Health, Candace created Peptide T, the non-toxic treatment for HIV featured in Dallas BuyersClub. As the AIDS pandemic raged, triggering panic across Reagan-era America, the U.S. government poured massive amounts of money into finding a cure, sparking a battle among scientists for funding and power. Bested by rivals with competing drugs yet desperate to help, Candace went rogue, becoming a lynchpin in the black market for Peptide T.
After a scandalous departure from her tenured position at the NIH, Candace launched a series of private companies with Michael Ruff, her second husband and collaborator. Naïve to the world of business, she was manipulated by investors keen to wrest control of her discoveries. But Candace too became tainted, believing that her noble ends would justify devious means. Like a mythic hero, she succumbed to a fatal flaw, and her greatest strengths—singularity of purpose and blind faith in her own virtuosity—would prove to be her undoing.
- On Sale
- Nov 7, 2023
- Hachette Audio