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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Victor V. Levenson, MD, PhD (Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine)
Description: This book describes the modern state of the field of DNA repair — both enzymology and signal transduction — as it relates to cancer therapy, including chemotherapy and radiotherapy. The book also has several chapters on mechanisms of resistance to therapy and means of elucidation and reversing this resistance.
Purpose: The main goal of the book is to bridge the gap between clinical phenomena of drug resistance and the current state-of-the art knowledge in the field, and to review the latest developments in the field pertinent for translational and clinical use. There is an obvious need for a comprehensive review of DNA repair as applied to cancer therapy and emergence of resistance, and this book is definitely appropriate and timely.
Audience: The intended audience includes physicians, pharmacologists, and medical and basic researchers at different levels of their training. Each group will find certain sections that are more relevant to their specific subspecialty, which is expected for such a broad and complex field as drug interactions with cellular DNA. At the same time, the book provides a well written overview of related areas assembled in one volume.
Features: The book contains 15 chapters written by different authors, and can be divided into four main areas: DNA repair and drug resistance to alkylating drugs; DNA repair of double-stranded breaks and cellular resistance to radiation; cellular responses to DNA damage and their involvement in resistance to therapy; and genomic instability and genetic variations as determinants of cancer susceptibility. The book gives a comprehensive review of the modern status of the DNA repair field for cancer researchers and clinical practitioners and provides a solid basis for in-depth study of different areas in this field. It could also serve as a handy reference if the index was not so small and unbalanced (e.g. no entries for a topic that is discussed in the vast majority of chapters).
Assessment: The book is a timely publication with a significant intended audience that will be served well. The book is well planned, well written, comprehensive, and addresses recent findings in the field. Moreover, no similar reviews have been published recently, so the need for such a book is fairly obvious.