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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Howard H. Sky-Peck, MD, PhD, FRSM (Rush Medical College of Rush University)
Description: The Methods in Enzymology series has been an important reference collection in libraries for many years. Volume 278 on fluorescence spectroscopy is no exception. It is a detailed description of the state of advancement and methodology.
Purpose: There have been significant advances in instrumentation, particularly in regard to time-resolved measurements and procedures for data analysis. More information on intrinsic fluorescent probes, such as tryptophan, have become available, and new types of probes and ways of attaching them to macromolecules have been described. It is now possible to do nanosecond time-resolved measurements through a microscope.
Audience: The volume is intended for scientific practitioners who wish to become acquainted with this methodology and have the necessary background.
Features: Topics covered in this volume include discussions of the fluorescence of tryptophan, the origin of the excited states, and their sensitivity to environmental perturbations. Studies of constrained tryptophan residues have been helpful in this regard. The fluorescence of proteins can be used to study equilibria and kinetics of protein-protein and protein-nucleic acid interaction. New technology is described that allows fluorescence lifetimes to be used to study slower kinetic processes. Fluorescence also provides excellent ways to measure DNA cleavage.
Assessment: This volume is designed as a means of acquainting bioscientists with the up-to-date uses and the importance of fluorescence spectroscopy in the analysis of macromolecules. It accomplishes these objectives very well and should be included in science libraries.