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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Matthew J Brady, Ph.D.(University of Chicago Medical Center)
Description: This book collects the oral presentations and subsequent audience discussions at a symposium on fatty acids and lipotoxicity in obesity and diabetes held in Tsinghua, China in the fall of 2006.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide a written transcript of all the oral scientific presentations and follow-up discussions at the meeting.
Audience: The appropriate audience for this book would be scientific researchers in any area of fatty acid and energy metabolism, and graduate, medical, and undergraduate students with an interest in this topic. The book is accessible and thus would also be appropriate for healthcare providers with an interest in obesity/diabetes.
Features: The symposium and the book largely focus on the control of lipid metabolism, and the molecular and metabolic links between the development of obesity and systemic insulin resistance. There are numerous strengths to this collection of scientific talks. The presenters are all acknowledged experts in their respective fields and have provided excellent summaries of their respective laboratory research in context of the larger field. The question/answer section at the end of each chapter is especially informative, as readers are able to see other opinions on the topic as well as explore the unresolved areas requiring further investigation. In particular, since the people asking questions were also the other speakers in the symposium, links between the different talks and subject areas are often made, which provides a terrific coherence to the entire book. Finally, the book is exceptionally easy to read since the topics had to be prepared as oral presentations.
Assessment: This book will be an excellent resource for either beginning students or more established investigators in the field. The speakers are all top-notch researchers who gave clear and informative presentations. The integrative nature of the follow-up discussions and the excellent insights provided by the chair of the meeting throughout give the book an unusual coherence and consistency that is often lacking in broad, general reviews.