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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Kevan C. Herold, MD (Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons)
Description: This is the first of a new two-part series designed to review the latest in diabetes research in a comprehensive but concise manner. In this volume, the authors have invited contributions pertaining to factors affecting beta cell function, including autoimmunity, the genetics of diabetes, and molecular mechanisms of insulin synthesis and secretion. Because the field has evolved rapidly, a concise summary of the latest developments is very valuable.
Purpose: The book is written primarily for researchers and others with particular interests in the pathogenesis of diabetes. However, there is a great deal of valuable information for specialists in diabetes that has bearing on approaches to disease and future treatment. The text is not overly bogged down with experimental details, and so it would also be valuable to one interested in keeping abreast of research developments in the field. The authors and contributors are recognized authorities in the field of diabetes.
Audience: The book is easy to read, but there are relatively few illustrations. Those that are included deal primarily with presentation of data rather than summary of concepts. The references are, in general, up-to-date.
Features: In general, the book includes broadly based reviews of essential areas. Overall, the chapters are well written. However, they do tend to focus on the author's own biases, and a more balanced approach would improve the quality of the book. However, this is also a strength of this book. Each of the contributors is an outstanding researcher in the field, and has made significant contributions. Thus, the approaches taken are justified.
Assessment: This is an essential book for a medical library to have, and it is a welcome addition to the library of investigators in the field. Specialists in diabetes will also find this book very useful.