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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Rebecca T. Horvat, PhD, D (ABMM)(University of Kansas Medical Center)
Description: This new edition of a classic reference in microbiology is put together well. In over 1,000 pages, this book covers the multiple topics and techniques used to investigate microorganisms. With the previous edition of this book over 10 years old, this update was necessary to include the many new investigational tools developed since then.
Purpose: The purpose of this book has remained constant over the years. The previous versions have become the standard source of information for microbiologists in all fields. This book is the "first source for traditional methods of microbiology as well as modern molecular biology." The new version includes new methods and theories as well as new areas of microbiology.
Audience: All scientists and students of microbiology will find this book a valuable resource. It is written at a level appropriate for professional scientists as well as training scientists. All of the chapters are well organized and are written by well established scientists familiar with both the science and technical details.
Features: This book covers both the theory and practical considerations of the various techniques used to study microorganisms. The different sections cover microscopy, analysis of enzymatic reactions, microbial metabolism, and molecular analysis. The authors emphasize the need for multiple types of analyses in order to answer the multiple questions in microbiology. Each chapter contains the basic background and historical information needed to understand the new methods and each method is presented in detail that makes it easy to follow. There is also discussion of potential problems and how to avoid them. In some cases the authors have listed the equipment and reagents needed to successfully use the technique.
Assessment: It is hard to improve on success, but this latest edition of a treasured classic has exceeded expectations. The original edition was my first "real" microbiology textbook and it will be good to have an up-to-date version. This latest edition can be relied upon to teach the new generation of scientists and will remain a treasure in my collection of classic references for many years.