The Edge of Life

The Edge of Life

Controversies and Challenges in Human Health

‘The world beyond the thought horizon is as vast as the universe, and probing it is the stuff of dreams, imaginative thinking and new technologies.’

The gap between rapid scientific progress and public understanding faces unprecedented challenges. Leading research scientist Mike Berridge explores this troubled ground from a rare vantage point. His descriptions of stunning new advances in human health are offset by hard questions about society’s ability to keep pace. This exploration brings us into contact with hotly contested public health issues, such as cancer treatment, sugar consumption, and water fluoridation. It is also a heartfelt plea to place robust and impartial science at the centre of our thinking for the future.

Mike Berridge: What is the consequence of our cleanliness obsession? - The Nation, 12 September 2015

Mike Berridge on how we've become an over medicated society - The Nation, 12 September 2015

What are BWB Texts?

BWB Texts are short books on big subjects by great New Zealand writers. Spanning contemporary issues, history and memoir, new BWB Texts are released regularly, and the series now amounts to well over fifty works.

All recently published BWB Texts can be purchased in print and digital formats using the ‘Buy’ or ‘Preorder’ buttons on this page. You can also subscribe to the series – a great gift idea! Find more information about subscription offers here.

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Print publication:
Ebook publication: Sep 2015
Pages: 120
RRP: $14.99
ISBN: 9780908321339

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'Lisa Owen interviews Mike Berridge', Scoop, 12 September 2015

'Exposing kids to bacteria could help immunity', 3News, 12 September 2015

'Parents too precious with bugs?', Patrice Dougan, New Zealand Herald, 12 September 2015


'The text is topical, lively and a pleasure to read ... The Edge of Life provides an accessible and non-threatening ‘in’ to these complex and massively important issues.' Peter Doherty, New Zealand Science Review, 72, 4 (2015)