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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Michael Cummings, PhD (University of Illinois at Chicago)
Description: This is the latest volume in the excellent and timely Human Molecular Genetics Series.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide an overview of the structure, function, and evolution of human genes and gene families.
Audience: This book is intended for researchers in human molecular genetics, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate students. Clinicians with an interest in genetic diseases will find valuable insights into the evolutionary history of genes associated with specific disorders.
Features: The book has four parts. Part 1 is an introduction to the components of the human genome, their structure, function, and evolution. In Part 2 the evolution of gene structure is detailed, including introns, exons, and alternative splicing, as well as the evolutionary origins of prompters, transcription factors, and pseudogenes. Part 3 is an exploration of the mutational mechanisms that have played a role in the evolution of the human genome, beginning with single base substitutions. Concluding chapters in this section include coverage of the evolution of gene size and number, gross chromosomal changes, and finally, the reconstruction of ancient genes.
Assessment: An impressive span of literature on the structure, function and evolution of human genes has been woven together in a comprehensive, readable volume that is highly recommended to all with interest in human genes.