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The Germ Code Paperback – Nov 5 2013

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Doubleday Canada (Nov. 5 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385678533
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385678537
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 1.9 x 20.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 259 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #62,237 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


“With The Germ Code, first-time author Jason Tetro has delivered an important book that brings the world of microorganisms entertainingly to life. Tetro has a breezy style and relishes the interesting tale. . . . There are more than enough absorbing stories to keep the reader hooked.”
Toronto Star   

About the Author

JASON TETRO is a microbiologist who has spent the last 25 years learning about the effect germs have on our lives. He is currently Coordinator for the Emerging Pathogen Research Centre (EPRC) and the Centre for Research on Environmental Microbiology (CREM), both housed at the University of Ottawa. In 2007, he ventured out of the lab and into the TV studio for a Q&A news segment on CTV Ottawa as "The Germ Guy." He has since broadcast and written for a wide range of media, including the Toronto Star, Scientific American, The Huffington Post Canada , the CBC, and his own "Germ Guy" blog. In 2011 he was awarded an honorary PhD in Social Media from Social Media University Global in recognition of his work to improve hand hygiene through social media using the hashtag #handhygiene, which has now been adopted by the World Health Organization. The author lives in Ottawa.

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Customer Reviews

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Blunderer on Sept. 28 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The germ Code is a great reminder of just how primitive and savage we remain, in spite of our apparently sophisticated and civilised world. We need the complex, and intelligent life forms , that inhabit our selves, and this world , in order to survive.
Our efforts to eradicate the life that surround us , in order to become wealthy , healthy , and powerful , are mere simple minded and pointless ambition , the greed that drives us still based on grabbing everything , no matter its self destruct factor .
A great book , an eye opener, a big learning curve , worth every penny,
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Bohdan Lewyckyj on Nov. 23 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Well written book with plenty of information. Easy to read and at times humorous. I have a better appreciation for these tiny guys and I will wash my hands a lot more often now!

It's a good book for all of us concerned about our health and the health of our society as a whole. The germs are not our number one enemy but you do have to respect their power.
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By Barbara Alguire on June 22 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Excellent general reference. Lots of good current information. Easy to read.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
A Stroll Through the Wonderful World of Microbes Nov. 12 2013
By Maxine McLister - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
"Human beings are engaged in a 'war on germs', in which they develop ever-more sophisticated weapons and defensive strategies. But it is a war we can never win. The Germ Code is a wise, witty and wonderfully readable guide to living with these infinitesimal but infinitely powerful creatures. Microbiologist Jason Tetro takes readers outside the lab and shows the enormous influence of germs upon humanity's past, present and future. He unlocks the mysteries of 'the germ code' to reveal how these organisms have exploited our every activity and colonised every corner of the earth."

There used to be a commercial for a certain soap which claimed to kill 99.99 % of the germs we come into contact with on a daily basis. Personally, it wasn't the 99.99 who were so easily killed a mild soap could do it which had me worried but that hardy little .01% left to carry on that scared the bejeezus out of me. So was I right to worry. Well, it seems from reading this book that that would be a resounding Maybe.

In The Germ Code author Jason Tetro AKA the germ guy explores how germs effect us both for good and for bad, which ones we should learn to coexist peaceably with and those we should bring out the big guns for and how, sometimes, the two can become interchangeable. He examines some of the methods developed to fight the most deadly microbes like malaria, why some succeeded and why many are now failing. He also looks at some of the new strategies which are being tested for diseases like Colitis, some of which are a tad disgusting but surprisingly effective. And, in case you have ever wondered, he explains which part of our body tells our life history through the germs living there and, trust me, it is not where you're think. Honestly, someone needs to get that bar of soap out.

The book is written in language even a scientifically challenged sort like me can understand. Tetro not only takes us on a fascinating stroll through the wonderful world of microbes but he lists strategies which can be taken to lessen their impact on our lives. I was surprised that he suggests using antibacterial products but, otherwise, I found The Germ Code both enjoyable and enlightening.
Microbiology can be fun Aug. 8 2014
By Steve G - Published on
Format: Paperback
I enjoyed this book and found it hard to put down. Author Jason Tetro writes in a very conversational tone and with humor. He does an excellent job of translating science into plain English. Although microbial flora can be helpful, as per the premise of the book, most of the book is spent on how microbes can kill us. When Tetro finally gets to the helpful microbial flora, the tone changes and Tetro seems to be making overly optimistic claims. Fortunately this isn't a long section and Tetro reverts to his previous style. I recommend this book for anyone interested in biology. I do not really recommend it for mysophobiacs (germaphobes).
Excellent read July 15 2014
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Excellent read, highly recommend this to anyone interested in microbiology.