Not Uniquely Human: The Astonishing Connection Between Human and Animal Health

Laurel Braitman, Kathryn Bowers and Dr. Barbara Natterson-Horowitz
In conversation Sanden Totten, Science Reporter for KPCC
Thursday, July 10, 2014
Episode Summary

In their groundbreaking book Zoobiquity, cardiologist Barbara Natterson-Horowitz and science writer Kathryn Bowers describe how they arrived at a pan-species approach to medicine. Animals do indeed get diseases ranging from brain tumors and heart attacks to anxiety and eating disorders, just like we do—and the authors explore how animal and human commonality can be used to diagnose, treat, and heal patients of all species. In her illuminating new book, Animal Madness, Laurel Braitman chronicles her parallel discoveries of what nonhuman animals can teach us about mental illness and recovery. Join us to hear what we can learn from a blind elephant, compulsive parrots, depressed gorillas, and a cow with anger management issues.

Participant(s) Bio

Laurel Braitman is a contributing writer for Pop Up Magazine, The New Inquiry, Orion, and other publications. She holds a Ph.D. in the history of science from MIT and is a Senior TED Fellow. Her newly published book is Animal Madness: How Anxious Dogs, Compulsive Parrots, and Elephants in Recovery Help Us Understand Ourselves.

Kathryn Bowers was a staff editor at The Atlantic and a writer and producer at CNN International. She has edited and written popular and academic books and teaches a course at UCLA on medical narrative. Bowers co-authored Zoobiquity with Barbara Natterson-Horowtiz.

Barbara Natterson-Horowitz, M.D., earned her degrees at Harvard and the University of California, San Francisco. She is a cardiology professor at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and serves on the medical advisory board of the Los Angeles Zoo as a cardiovascular consultant. Her writing has appeared in many scientific and medical publications. Natterson-Horowitz co-authored Zoobiquity with Kathryn Bowers.

As KPCC's Science Reporter, Sanden Totten covers everything from space exploration and medical technology to endangered species and the latest earthquake research. Totten is the co-producer of Brains On!, a podcast for kids and curious adults about the scientific mysteries of the universe, and has won several honors, including the Radio and TV News Association’s Golden Mike for “Best Radio Medical and Science Reporting,” the National Entertainment Journalism's award for “Best Radio News Story,” and a 2011 Knight Science Journalism Fellowship at MIT.