Scaling in Biology / Edition 1

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Overview

Scaling relationships have been a persistent theme in biology at least since the time of Leonardo da Vinci and Galileo. While there have been many excellent empirical and theoretical investigations, there has been little attempt to synthesize this diverse but interrelated area of biology. In an effort to fill this void, Scaling in Biology , the first general treatment of scaling in biology in over 15 years, covers a broad spectrum of the most relevant topics in a series of chapters written by experts in the field. Some of those topics discussed include allometry and fractal structure, branching of vascular systems of mammals and plants, biomechanical and life history of plants, invertebrates and vertebrates, and species-area patterns of biological diversity.

The book contains black-and-white illustrations.

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Editorial Reviews

From The Critics
Reviewer: Mailen Kootsey, PhD (Loma Linda University)
Description: This book is assembled from contributions presented at scaling in biology sponsored by the Santa Fe Institute, famous for the study of the sciences of complexity. Each chapter contributor addresses the following question: As we move up in size from bacterium to whale or giant tree, how do the various biological processes scale and what physical principles lie behind the ratios?
Purpose: The editors set out to produce a summary of current thinking from multiple disciplines on scaling in biology. The topic is timely because of current intense interest in quantitative and integrative biology. Roots of these interests extend back many years, but the computer and precise, new instrumentation in biology have greatly accelerated the pace of work and the level of interest.
Audience: The editors hope to communicate ideas about scaling to a broad audience, especially students and young researchers. Although the contributors are all specialized researchers, the editors worked to overcome the biologist's typical aversion to mathematics by keeping the number of mathematical equations to a minimum and by including graphs for visualization as well as ample introductory material.
Features: A strong feature of this book is the broad range of viewpoints of biological scaling represented, from field biology to mathematics and computer simulation. Typical subjects reviewed include mechanical support and movement, branching in arteries and leaves, and species abundance. Although the chapters are written by different authors, the terminology and mathematical symbols have largely been standardized by the editors.
Assessment: I personally appreciate this volume because it represents genuine integrative biology — understanding system behavior from underlying principles and components. This viewpoint is frequently praised, but seldom achieved in detail. This book is, in my opinion, an important contribution to quantitative biology and can be read and appreciated by both biologists and mathematicians.
Mailen Kootsey
This book is assembled from contributions presented at scaling in biology sponsored by the Santa Fe Institute, famous for the study of the sciences of complexity. Each chapter contributor addresses the following question: As we move up in size from bacterium to whale or giant tree, how do the various biological processes scale and what physical principles lie behind the ratios? The editors set out to produce a summary of current thinking from multiple disciplines on scaling in biology. The topic is timely because of current intense interest in quantitative and integrative biology. Roots of these interests extend back many years, but the computer and precise, new instrumentation in biology have greatly accelerated the pace of work and the level of interest. The editors hope to communicate ideas about scaling to a broad audience, especially students and young researchers. Although the contributors are all specialized researchers, the editors worked to overcome the biologist's typical aversion to mathematics by keeping the number of mathematical equations to a minimum and by including graphs for visualization as well as ample introductory material. A strong feature of this book is the broad range of viewpoints of biological scaling represented, from field biology to mathematics and computer simulation. Typical subjects reviewed include mechanical support and movement, branching in arteries and leaves, and species abundance. Although the chapters are written by different authors, the terminology and mathematical symbols have largely been standardized by the editors. I personally appreciate this volume because it represents genuine integrative biology -- understanding system behaviorfrom underlying principles and components. This viewpoint is frequently praised, but seldom achieved in detail. This book is, in my opinion, an important contribution to quantitative biology and can be read and appreciated by both biologists and mathematicians.

4 Stars! from Doody
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Product Details

Table of Contents

Preface Scaling in Biology: Patterns and Processes, Causes and Consequences, James H. Brown, Geoffrey B. West, and Brian J. Enquist
Allometry and Natural Selection, John Tyler Bonner and Henry S. Horn
Hovering and Jumping: Contrasting Problems in Scaling, R. McNeill Alexander
Scaling of Terrestrial Support: Differing Solutionsto Mechanical Constraints of Size, Andrew A. Biewener
Consequences of Size Change during Ontogeny and Evolution, Mimi A. R. Koehl
The Origin of Universal Scaling Laws in Biology, Geoffrey B. West, James H. Brown, and Brian J. Enquist
Scaling and Invariants in Cardiovascular Biology, John K.-J. Li
Vascular System of the Human Heart: Some Branching and Scaling Issues, Mair Zamir
Constrained Constructive Optimization of Arterial Tree Models, Wolfgang Schreiner et al.
Quarter-Power Allometric Scaling in Vascular Plants: Functional Basis and Ecological Consequences, Brian J. Enquist, Geoffrey B. West, and James H. Brown
Twigs, Trees, and the Dynamics of Carbon in the Landscape, Henry S. Horn
Cell Size, Shape, and Fitness in Evolving Populations of Bacteria, Richard E. Lenski and Judith A. Mongold
Does Body Size Optimization Alter the Allometries for Production and Life History Traits?, Jan Kozd/lowski
Why and How Phylogenetic Relationships Should Be Incorporated into Studies of Scaling, Paul H. Harvey
Individual Energy Use and the Allometry of Population Density, Hélène Cyr
Diversity and Convergence: Scaling for Conservation, William A. Calder
Scaling and Self-Similarity in Species Distributions: Implications for Extinction, Species Richness, Abundance, and Range, John Harte
Index

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