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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Andrew J. Andres, PhD (Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine)
Description: This book provides a comprehensive review of the emerging and increasingly important field of pharmacogenetics, the genetic factors responsible for person-to-person differential responses to drugs or environmental agents.
Purpose: The main purpose is to introduce to students of the healthcare profession the basic concepts, applications, and history of pharmacogenetics.
Audience: Individuals most interested in this book would be upper-level undergraduates and career graduate and medical students. The book makes a strong case that this often overlooked area of medical research is emerging and becoming an increasingly important field of study. The author has been a well-known and respected authority in the field for 30 years.
Features: This 340-page book is divided into two parts: basic concepts and applications. Its best feature is its comprehensive and historical nature. The narrative writing style, plethora of tables and illustrations, chapter summaries, and study questions make it easy for the student to read, comprehend, and study. It would serve as a good basic textbook for those who know little about the field but want a single source that spells out its complete foundation. Its major shortcoming seems to be that it does not provide its audience with a good sense of the future of the field. Some of the most current literature seems underrepresented, and it does not discuss the likely contributions driven by technology like the Human Genome Project.
Assessment: This book would serve as an excellent basic text or reference for students and members of healthcare profession. Every campus library should own a copy, as should every clinician or researcher interested in pharmacology, toxicology, and drug interactions.