© 2012

The Forgotten Cure

The Past and Future of Phage Therapy


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvi
  2. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 1-22
  3. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 23-34
  4. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 35-42
  5. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 43-51
  6. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 63-70
  7. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 71-76
  8. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 77-85
  9. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 87-99
  10. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 101-108
  11. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 109-113
  12. Anna Kuchment
    Pages 115-118
  13. Back Matter
    Pages 119-131

About this book


“Bacteriophages have the potential to stop many if not most life threatening, drug resistant bacterial infections.  The Forgotten Cure is a non-stop, cover to cover read.”

James D. Watson, Nobel Laureate



“A lively tale of killer viruses, superbugs and a magical cure that has all the twists of a cold-war spy novel.” – George Hackett, Newsweek magazine



 “A marvelous, jargon-free historical account of the genesis, the ups-and-downs, and the current renaissance of phage therapy. The Forgotten Cure ranks at the level of Judson’s Eighth Day of Creation.”

Sankar Adhya

National Institutes of Health

The Forgotten Cure: How a Long Lost Treatment Can Save Lives in the 21st Century



Before the arrival of penicillin in the 1940s, phage therapy was one of the few weapons doctors had against bacterial infections. It saved the life of Hollywood legend Tom Mix before being abandoned by Western science. Now, researchers and physicians are rediscovering the treatment, which pits phage viruses against their natural bacterial hosts, as a potential weapon against antibiotic-resistant infections.

The Forgotten Cure traces the story of phages from Paris, where they were discovered in 1917; to Tbilisi, Georgia, where one of phage therapy’s earliest proponents died at the hands of Stalin; to the Nobel podium, where prominent scientists have been recognized for breakthroughs stemming from phage research. Today, a crop of biotech startups and dedicated physicians is racing to win regulatory approval for phage therapy before superbugs exhaust the last drug in the medical arsenal. Will they clear the hurdles in time? 


Alternative therapy Phages Probiotics

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Scientific AmericanNew YorkUSA

Bibliographic information

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