Regular price: $20.97

Membership details Membership details
  • 30 days of membership free, plus 1 audiobook and 2 Audible Originals to get you started.
  • After trial, you'll get 3 titles each month: 1 audiobook and 2 Audible Originals of your choice.
  • Don't like your audiobook? Swap it for free.
  • Cancel anytime and keep your audiobooks.
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month.
  • Get access to the Member Daily Deal
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

What happens when ideas presented as science lead us in the wrong direction? History is filled with brilliant ideas that gave rise to disaster, and this book explores the most fascinating - and significant - missteps.

Pandora's Lab takes us from opium's heyday as the pain reliever of choice to recognition of opioids as a major cause of death in the United States; from the rise of trans fats as the golden ingredient for tastier, cheaper food to the heart disease epidemic that followed; and from the cries to ban DDT for the sake of the environment to an epidemic-level rise in world malaria.

These are today's sins of science - as deplorable as mistaken ideas from the past such as advocating racial purity or using lobotomies as a cure for mental illness. These unwitting errors add up to seven lessons both cautionary and profound, explained by renowned author and speaker Paul A. Offit. Offit uses these lessons to investigate how we can separate good science from bad, using as case studies some of today's most controversial creations: e-cigarettes, GMOs, and drug treatments for ADHD.

For every "Aha!" moment that should have been an "Oh no", this book is an engrossing account of how science has been misused disastrously - and how we can learn to use its power for good.

©2017 Paul A. Offit (P)2017 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

More from the same

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    317
  • 4 Stars
    85
  • 3 Stars
    15
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    5

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    295
  • 4 Stars
    74
  • 3 Stars
    12
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    1

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    287
  • 4 Stars
    67
  • 3 Stars
    12
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    4
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Very interesting

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I really enjoyed this book, it was a fascinating insight into how egos and science collide and the price that is paid. Very well narrated also.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Cautionary Tales and How-to-Think Instructions

First-rate production of a message we all need to follow. I.e., require evidence to support what we think we know. Let’s hear it for double-blind, peer-reviewed, reproducible studies!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Close Facebook and read this book!

We live in a world of sound-bite immersion where personality drives opinion. Movie stars influence our thoughts more than data. News anchors do not deliver the facts as much as they are on-air rock stars in their own right. What they say is taken for gospel regardless of how carefully their stories are underpinned with data.

It is a dangerous world.

You and your family are in danger without careful, critical thinking like that described in this book.

Pandora’s Lab should be essential reading for every thinking adult, especially every medical doctor.

Please read this book!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

avoid common trends and think for yourself book

excellent coverage of the good and bad of various discoveries. also, don't believe people even if they are "experts" if it doesn't make sense. great book for all medical professionals!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Throughly enjoyable

Enjoyed the style of how each section was presented as a story. Narration by Greg Tremblay adds to the already excellent book. Learnt a few new things compared to the fluff you have to put up with some authors.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

excellent source of information

I always love learning especially when it's about science and science history. This book gives an insight on why critical thinking is so important and at how wrong we can be.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Stick to the science and drop the political slant.

Would you listen to Pandora’s Lab again? Why?

No. The science and story were good, but the author did a lot of Republican political bashing and drawing unfounded similarities. That would have been fine for a book on politics, but was not appropriate for a book on scientific discoveries. It seems like nothing is non-partisan these days.

Would you ever listen to anything by Paul A. Offit, MD again?

No

Have you listened to any of Greg Tremblay’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Yes, he is an excellent performer.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No

24 of 36 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

More of the medical, less of the political

The medical stuff was pretty fascinating, but the author kept inserting political points that had little to do with the subject matter.

20 of 32 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Overall all very good

I really enjoyed Dr. Offit’s book and insight to how bad things can happen when ideas trump evidence (medical dogma plus political correctness) or in a vacuum of treatment options. As a physician, I have walked through many of the scenarios described in the book. I remember in medical school being taught the 5th vital sign of pain and how to address it adequately. We were told if they truly had pain they wouldn’t get addicted. Also, I remember being taught about mega dosing of vitamins by Linus Pauling and would take vitamin c 1,000 mg every hour until I got the “trots” as per Pauling’s instructions for cold prevention. It is fascinating to see how little evidence was at the root of both recommendations that I learned.

My only “beef” with the book was the comparison of Trump’s illegal immigration policies as an example of eugenics. Really? Offit chose illegal immigration? Especially when you have something like planned parenthood as such a blatant example. It was created for that reason - to get rid of the poor and minorities. It really colored my whole view of the book which I loved except for that part. Planned Parenthood, the largest single provider of abortions in the U.S., performs more than 300,000 terminations each year. Planned Parenthood operates the nation's largest chain of abortion facilities, and almost 80 percent of its facilities are located in minority neighborhoods. About 13 percent of American women are black, but they have more than 35 percent of the abortions. 247 black babies are killed everyday. In some areas of the country more black babies are killed by abortion than are born alive.

Planned Parenthood founder and eugenics advocate Margaret Sanger started “The Negro Project” in 1939 to thwart the population growth of the poor and minorities, or, as Sanger put it, to discourage “the defective and diseased elements of humanity” from their “reckless and irresponsible swarming and spawning.”

A much better example. Try it next time, Dr. Offit, rather than being politically correct. And the left misses the whole point about why illegal immigration is not favored. It’s not being prejudice as Dr. Offit so short sightedly says. It’s an economic issue. We have persons that are here illegally getting free health care, housing etc and my taxes pay for it. Not to mention the safety issues with terrorism.

Overall, a great read. I recommend it for anyone going into a scientific curriculum, especially medicine. Science gets a free pass and is accepted as fact. As pointed out in this book, we must always be vigilant and careful especially when things seem too good to be true. I really do appreciate Dr. Offit’s investigations into all of the issues and exposing them.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Too many familiar stories

I knew most of the stories. The author brought little new insight to these stories. The style is like an educational lecture, rather than telling a captivating story.