Ted Anton


My new book,  The Rise of the Microbes: Life’s Origin, Better Health and A Sustainable Future in the World’s Tiniest Organisms, chronicles a science revolution in understanding new ways to  treat rising rates of obesity, diabetes, autoimmune disease and some of our most mysterious emotional disorders.  

Due in 2016 from University of Chicago Press, this new book reveals a hidden, living world at the bottom of the ocean and miles below the earth’s surface, in our gardens and our bodies, to show readers how organisms so tiny that a billion live in a spoonful of seawater can profoundly affect our health and environment.  Dating back to the earth’s very beginning, microbes make our oxygen and soil, recycle everything that dies, and create most of the processes, like respiration and metabolism, on which our lives depend.  

My previous book, The Longevity Seekers (University of Chicago Press, 2013) took readers inside a tale that began with worms and branched out to snare innovative minds from California to Crete, investments from big biotech, and endorsements from TV personalities like Oprah and Dr. Oz. That book offered a behind-the-scenes look at the state of the research and the impact it might have on global public health, society, and even our friends and family.   With all the elements of a great story, The Longevity Seekers helped to shed light on discoveries that could fundamentally reshape human life.

"Anton reveals a young field already rife with larger-than-life personalities and lab drama aplenty,"
Barbara Kiser,

"A must-read.  The characters are fascinating.  And the stories behind the breakthroughs that have already occurred are gripping enough to compete with a mystery novel.  Any one of the scientists profiled by Anton is likely to change the course of history." S. Jay Olshanksy, Health Affairs

"Anton vividly recounts the excitement in the various labs... and the intensity of the scientists' search,"
Bee Wilson, Harper's

"A valuable, engaging addition to the literature on longevity. . . . Anton is well equipped for the task of translating complicated scientific matters into accessible language. . . [His] polished prose almost qualifies The Longevity Seekers for The New Yorker or a good detective yarn; understated are his extensive research forays, the double-checking of facts. and the erudition that undergirds the book.” W. A. Achenbaum, Global Public Health

The Longevity Seekers was named a finalist in nonfiction for the 2014 Book  Awards from the Society of Midland Authors.

A link to The Longevity Seekers recent lecture at the National Hellenic Museum in Chicago:

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