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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Kevin E. Healy(Northwestern University)
Description: The book attempts to present polymers that use aspects of biotechnology either in their synthesis or ultimate application. The book is a unique contribution from a combined American Chemical Society symposium sponsored by the Biotechnology Secretariat and the Division of Polymeric Materials.
Purpose: The focus is to describe polymers that essentially combine features of biotechnology and bioactivity. This book represents a much-needed contribution from an interdisciplinary group of researchers and should be well accepted, although the circulation may not be particularly great. The book meets the authors' objectives; however, in many chapters, the materials invoke biotechnology, but not bioactivity, or the converse. The title may overstate the contents of the text.
Audience: This book is targeted toward advanced graduate and postdoctoral students as well as the basic and applied scientist. The authors are clearly experts in their fields, and the work presented reflects significant progress compared with previously published works. The audience may encompass a wide diversity of disciplines, spanning materials science of native (i.e., biologically derived) or synthetic polymers, to cell biology.
Features: The format is consistent throughout the text. All figures and tables seem appropriate, although some figures appear upside down when viewed with the text in a normal reading position. The unique feature is the diverse nature of the contributions from researchers in disparate fields addressing common themes. Breadth of this type only comes from jointly sponsored symposia.
Assessment: The scientific quality of this book is high. It seems that researchers both at the symposium and others unable to attend would appreciate this text. However, the material presented in the text may be outdated, because the symposium took place two years ago.