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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Edmund W. Quillen, Jr., MD (University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine)
Description: This book provides a general description of ways the placenta can be used in pharmacologic research together with appropriate physiologic background.
Purpose: The book purports to provide information on different ways the placenta can be used in investigation of mechanisms of drug and chemical transfer across the placenta. The book was not intended as a comprehensive treatise but rather as a useful monograph for scientists of different disciplines.
Audience: This book is appropriate for either scientists or students of any discipline interested in placental research. The editor and authors are all expert in a variety of aspects of placental function, so a reasonably broad review of placental pharmacology and physiology is provided.
Features: The book is well illustrated and referenced. Although the references are numerous, many are older, possibly reflecting the need for more current work. Each chapter is preceded by a contents listing, and most chapters are concluded with a summary section. The book has an overall good appearance, but the cover is bland. The book has pages with color Doppler and colored computerized image analyses of in situ hybridized slides.
Assessment: This book is useful to the researcher who has a background in placental function, but it is even more valuable as an introduction to investigators new to this field. The book was intended to present methodologic approaches to studies of placental function, but only two of its eight chapters are so oriented. Nevertheless, the reviews of techniques, drug transfer, and endocrine function make the book a worthwhile addition to both library and personal collections.