Essential Cell Biology / Edition 3

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Essential Cell Biology provides an accessible introduction to the fundamental concepts of cell biology. Its lively writing and exceptional illustrations make it the ideal textbook for a first course in cell and molecular biology. The text and figures are easy-to-follow, accurate, clear, and engaging for the introductory student. Molecular detail has been kept to a minimum in order to provide the reader with a cohesive, conceptual framework of the basic science that underlies our current understanding of biology.

The Third Edition is thoroughly updated scientifically, yet maintains the academic level and size of the previous edition. The book is accompanied by a Media DVD-ROM with over 130 animations and videos, all the figures from the book, and a new self-test quizzing feature for students.

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Editorial Reviews

From The Critics
Reviewer: Bruce A. Fenderson, PhD (Thomas Jefferson University)
Description: This is the third edition of an introduction to the exciting world of cell biology. As the authors note, "in our world there is no form of matter more astonishing than the living cell." The book's 20 concise chapters cover topics ranging from membranes and mitochondria to stem cells and cancer.
Purpose: The authors' purpose is to "explain, in a way that can be understood even by a reader approaching modern biology for the first time, how the living cell works." This book is derived in part from the larger textbook by the same authors, Molecular Biology of the Cell, 5th edition (Garland Science, 2008). The value of this abridged book is that it provides "a digestible, straightforward, and engaging account of only the essential principles."
Audience: This is an outstanding companion text for undergraduate and graduate-level courses in cell biology (cellular biochemistry). It is written for students across a wide range of life science disciplines, including developmental biology, biochemistry, and biophysics. The authors are outstanding research scientists, noted authors, and highly regarded educators.
Features: Readers will experience a sense of awe and wonder about life on Earth. The authors are mindful of the ancient evolutionary history of cell structure and function, and they take time to instruct students on innovative and successful approaches to scientific inquiry. Molecular models highlight examples of biological structure. Full-color illustrations and photomicrographs are easy to understand and highlight key points. Open-ended questions throughout the book and at the end of each chapter stimulate critical thinking and application of knowledge. For example, one color-coded question box asks: "How do cells in plant roots survive, since they do not have chloroplasts and are not exposed to sunlight?" (Answers are in the back of the book.) The CD that is included contains video clips, animations, molecular structures and high-resolution photomicrographs — a real treasure trove of ancillary information for students and teachers alike. The inside front cover is filled with helpful information, including a chart of amino acids and their codons, as well as units of measure and other useful constants and conversions. The book also includes a glossary.
Assessment: The authors organize and explain the basic intracellular processes that are critical for life. Large font and colorful graphics make the book student-friendly. It is comprehensive yet concise, and it is polished in every detail, from the lively front cover to colorful illustrations and beautiful photomicrographs that highlight current research. I enjoyed seeing the examples of research methods, such as the use of fluorescent tags and antibodies to reveal the subcellular localization of biomolecules. This book provides a great introduction to cell biology. It is well written, carefully edited, and a joy to read. I highly recommend it for undergraduates and graduate students in the life sciences. Every biology department and health science library should have multiple copies on hand.
The Quarterly Review of Biology
This book fills a critical niche in the pedagogical process of introducing cell biology and does an excellent job in reaching its objective.
December 2004, volume 79
An excellent example of designing a textbook for undergraduates and non-biology majors. It is clear, well illustrated, conversational in tone and enjoyable to read and browse through.
October 2004
CBE-Life Sciences Education
College and university professors who have used the previous editions of ECB will be pleased with the new edition. The format and organization are retained but have been infused with fresh images and updated material. It's as if a trusted old friend has come back from an extended vacation with a bright new look and a refreshed attitude. The reader is at once comfortable with and excited by the changes. New users of the textbook will find it accessible and approachable at the professorial and student levels . . . .I highly recommend it to all CBE-Life Sciences Education readers who are also classroom educators.

3 Stars from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780815341291
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 4/6/2009
  • Edition description: Revised
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 860
  • Sales rank: 134,456
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Bruce Alberts received his PhD from Harvard University and is Professor of Biochemistry and Biophysics at the University of California, San Francisco. He is the editor-in-chief of Science magazine. For 12 years he served as President of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences (1993-2005).

Dennis Bray received his PhD from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is currently an active emeritus professor at University of Cambridge. In 2006 he was awarded the Microsoft European Science Award.

Karen Hopkin received her PhD in biochemistry from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and is a science writer in Somerville, Massachusetts.

Alexander Johnson received his PhD from Harvard University and is Professor of Microbiology and Immunology and Director of the Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Genetics, and Developmental Biology Graduate Program at the University of California, San Francisco.

Julian Lewis received his DPhil from the University of Oxford and is a Principal Scientist at the London Research Institute of Cancer Research UK.

Martin Raff received his MD from McGill University and is at the Medical Research Council Laboratory for Molecular Cell Biology and Cell Biology Unit and in the Biology Department at University College London.

Keith Roberts received his PhD from the University of Cambridge and is Emeritus Fellow at the John Innes Centre, Norwich.

Peter Walter received his PhD from The Rockefeller University in New York and is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics at the University of California, San Francisco, and an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction to Cells
2. Chemical Components of Cells
3. Energy, Catalysis, and Biosynthesis
4. Protein Structure and Function
5. DNA and Chromosomes
6. DNA Replication, Repair, and Recombination
7. From DNA to Protein: How Cells Read the Genome
8. Control of Gene Expression
9. How Genes and Genomes Evolve
10. Manipulating Genes and Cells
11. Membrane Structure
12. Membrane Transport
13. How Cells Obtain Energy from Food
14. Energy Generation in Mitochondria and Chloroplasts
15. Intracellular Compartments and Transport
16. Cell Communication
17. Cytoskeleton
18. The Cell Division Cycle
19. Sex and Genetics
20. Tissues and Cancer

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 1, 2012

    Colorful and Confusing

    The book's cover and diagrams give you the idea it will be a cleanly organized and well formatted textbook. Just kidding! This book is so confusing in layout and in explanations you will be better off looking up the parts of a cell in a dictionary.

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    Posted July 25, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 26, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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