Current track



Noah Whiteman

February 8, 2024

Many plants produce toxins that are dangerous to humans. Why did they evolve to do this? Many indigenous cultures learned long ago which plants could aid in parasite removal or pain reduction and some of those are the same toxin producing plants. Some of these same compounds are also used today as important medicines. It’s all about the amount. On this episode of Inquiry, we talk with NOAH WHITEMAN. He is an evolutionary biologist at the University of California, Berkeley, where he is Professor of Integrative Biology and of Molecular Cell Biology. His new book is MOST DELICIOUS POISON: THE STORY OF NATURE’S TOXINS-FROM SPICES TO VICES.