An award-winning investigative journalist's horrifying true crime story of America's deadliest drug contamination outbreak and the greed and deception that fueled it.
Two pharmacists sit in a Boston courtroom accused of murder. The weapon: the fungus Exserohilum rostratum
. The death count: 100 and rising. Kill Shot
is the story of their hubris and fraud, discovered by a team of medical detectives who raced against the clock to hunt the killers and the fungal meningitis they'd unleashed.
Bloodthirsty is how doctors described the fungal microbe that contaminated thousands of drug vials produced by the New England Compounding Center (NECC). Though NECC chief Barry Cadden called his company the Ferrari of Compounders, it was a slapdash operation of unqualified staff, mold-ridden lab surfaces, and hastily made medications that were injected into approximately 14,000 people. Once inside some of its human hosts, the fungus traveled through the tough tissue around the spine and wormed upward to the deep brain, our control center for balance, breath, and the vital motor functions of life.
Now, investigative journalist Jason Dearen turns a spotlight on this tragedy--the victims, the heroes, and the perpetrators--and the legal loopholes that allowed it to occur. Kill Shot
forces a powerful but unchecked industry out of the shadows.
About the Author
Jason Dearen is an award-winning investigative journalist for the Associated Press and was a 2018-2019 Knight Science Journalism Fellow at MIT. His work appears regularly in hundreds of newspapers and websites, including The Washington Post, The Guardian, USA Today, and The New York Times. He has twice been nominated by the Associated Press for the Pulitzer Prize. Dearen grew up in California and attended the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism. He lives with his wife, a law professor.