The Cell: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Terence Allen,Graham Cowling

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191620262

Category: Science

Page: 160

View: 7103

All living things on Earth are composed of cells. A cell is the simplest unit of a self-contained living organism, and the vast majority of life on Earth consists of single-celled microbes, mostly bacteria. These consist of a simple 'prokaryotic' cell, with no nucleus. The bodies of more complex plants and animals consist of billions of 'eukaryotic' cells, of varying kinds, adapted to fill different roles - red blood cells, muscle cells, branched neurons. Each cell is an astonishingly complex chemical factory, the activities of which we have only begun to unravel in the past fifty years or so through modern techniques of microscopy, biochemistry, and molecular biology. In this Very Short Introduction, Terence Allen and Graham Cowling describe the nature of cells - their basic structure, their varying forms, their division, their differentiation from initially highly flexible stem cells, their signalling, and programmed death. Cells are the basic constituent of life, and understanding cells and how they work is central to all biology and medicine. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Stem Cells: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Jonathan Slack

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199603383

Category: Medical

Page: 130

View: 454

There is much public interest in stem cells, but also much confusion and misinformation. Developmental biologist Jonathan Slack explains the biology behind stem cells - what they are what scientists do with them, what stem cell therapies are available today, and what can be expected to happen in the future.

Microscopy

A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Terence Allen

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 0198701268

Category: Science

Page: 144

View: 8689

Using light, electrons, or X-rays, microscopes today form a vital tool not only in biology but in many other disciplines, including materials science and nanotechnology. In this Very Short Introduction Terence Allen describes the scientific principles behind the main forms of microscopy, and the exciting new developments in the field. Beginning with a brief history of microscopy, Allen surveys the diverse and powerful forms of microscopes available today, illustrating how microscopy impinges on almost every aspect of our daily lives.

Developmental Biology: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Lewis Wolpert

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199601194

Category: Science

Page: 132

View: 1344

"A concise account of what we know about development discusses the first vital steps of growth and explores one of the liveliest areas of scientific research."--P. [2] of cover.

Bacteria: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Sebastian G.B. Amyes

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0199578761

Category: Science

Page: 152

View: 8611

In this Very Short Introduction, Sebastian Amyes explores the nature of bacteria. As a fundamental branch of life, they inhabit every part of the Earth's surface. Amyes examines their origin and evolution, bacteria in the environment, and bacteria and disease, to demonstrate the fundamental role they play in our existence.

Genes

A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Jonathan Slack

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 019967650X

Category: Science

Page: 120

View: 2801

Explores the discovery, nature, and role of genes in evolution and development.

Das egoistische Gen

Mit einem Vorwort von Wolfgang Wickler

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Author: Richard Dawkins

Publisher: Springer-Verlag

ISBN: 3642553915

Category: Science

Page: 489

View: 7584

p”Ein auch heute noch bedeutsamer Klassiker“ Daily Express Sind wir Marionetten unserer Gene? Nach Richard Dawkins ́ vor über 30 Jahren entworfener und heute noch immer provozierender These steuern und dirigieren unsere von Generation zu Generation weitergegebenen Gene uns, um sich selbst zu erhalten. Alle biologischen Organismen dienen somit vor allem dem Überleben und der Unsterblichkeit der Erbanlagen und sind letztlich nur die "Einweg-Behälter" der "egoistischen" Gene. Sind wir Menschen also unserem Gen-Schicksal hilflos ausgeliefert? Dawkins bestreitet dies und macht uns Hoffnung: Seiner Meinung nach sind wir nämlich die einzige Spezies mit der Chance, gegen ihr genetisches Schicksal anzukämpfen.

Cancer: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Nick James,Nicholas James

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199560234

Category: Health & Fitness

Page: 137

View: 4733

In 1961 John F. Kennedy pledged to put a man on the moon by the end of the decade. Ten years later, Richard Nixon echoed this pledge by declaring a 'war' on cancer. More than 30 years later, however, cancer remains one of the largest causes of death worldwide, with around 1 in 3 developing the disease.

Molecules: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Philip Ball

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 019157841X

Category: Science

Page: 184

View: 1949

The processes in a single living cell are akin to that of a city teeming with molecular inhabitants that move, communicate, cooperate, and compete. In this Very Short Introduction, Philip Ball explores the role of the molecule in and around us - how, for example, a single fertilized egg can grow into a multi-celled Mozart, what makes spider's silk insoluble in the morning dew, and how this molecular dynamism is being captured in the laboratory, promising to reinvent chemistry as the central creative science of the century. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

The Brain: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Michael O'Shea

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0192853929

Category: Health & Fitness

Page: 136

View: 1873

This is a non-technical introduction to the main issues and findings in current brain research. It gives a sense of how neuroscience addresses questions about the relationship between the brain, and thought, memories, perceptions, and actions. Covering the details of brain science in an accessible style, it includes up to date coverage of developments of brain research, and suggests directions future research might take. The Brain also integrates discussion of the more familiar implications of the brain's actions, such as memories, perceptions, and motor control.Contents:Mind and brain: what's the problelm?Let's get physicalSight, sound, and imagination'Last week's potatoes!'Perception to actionAltered states of mindWhere do we go from here?

Human Anatomy

A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Leslie Klenerman

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 0198707371

Category: Medical

Page: 144

View: 2759

An understanding of the structure and function of the human body is vital for anyone studying the medical and health sciences. In this book, Leslie Klenerman provides a clear and accessible overview of the main systems of the human anatomy, illustrated with a number of clear explanatory diagrams.

Blood

A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Christopher Cooper

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199581452

Category: Science

Page: 147

View: 1013

Le rabat de la couverture indique : Blood is a vital fluid with a profound cultural and historical significance. Long considered the essence of life, blood pumps through our language and religion, and is a major diagnostic tool in the doctor's armoury. This Very Short Introduction explores early views of blood, our modern understanding of its nature and components, and future possibilities, such as artificial blood. Chris Cooper gets to the heart of this fascinating topic, covering the basic biology of blood, and the role of blood transfusions, blood tests, and the treatment of blood-borne diseases in modern medicine.

Microbiology

A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Nicholas P. Money

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 0199681686

Category: Science

Page: 122

View: 688

Describes the expansions of microbiology; it's methods, from traditional microscopy and laboratory culture to the latest genomic analysis.

Plants: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Timothy Walker

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199584060

Category: Science

Page: 129

View: 2022

Plants are a fundamental part of the biosphere and their evolution has directly affected animal life, and the Earth's climate. This Very Short Introduction provides a concise account of the nature of plants, their variety, their evolution, and their importance and uses, stressing the importance of conservation for the future.

Darwin: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Jonathan Howard

Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks

ISBN: 0192854542

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 125

View: 3502

Arguments still rage about the implications of the evolutionary theory, and scepticism about Darwin's contribution to knowledge is widespread. This accessible study reasserts the importance of Darwin's work for the development of modern biology.

Forensic Science: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Jim Fraser

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191609668

Category: Science

Page: 160

View: 9620

Forensic science is a subject of wide fascination. What happens at a crime scene? How does DNA profiling work? How can it help solve crimes that happened 20 years ago? In forensic science, a criminal case can often hinge on a piece of evidence such as a hair, a blood trace, half a footprint, or a tyre mark. High profile cases such as the Stephen Lawrence enquiry and the Madeleine McCann case have attracted enormous media attention and enhanced this interest in recent years. However, the public understanding of forensic science is poor, and largely based on TV shows such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, which exploit high-tech imagery for dramatic effect. Forensic science is a complex activity at the interface of science and law. However, it also deals with real life issues and its results are interpreted within unique situations. Complex scientific findings must be considered carefully, dispassionately, and communicated with clarity, simplicity, and precision. In this Very Short Introduction, Jim Fraser introduces the concept of forensic science and explains how it is used in the investigation of crime. He begins at the crime scene itself, explaining the principles and processes of crime scene management. He explores how forensic scientists work; from the reconstruction of events to laboratory examinations. He considers the techniques they use, such as fingerprinting, and goes on to highlight the immense impact DNA profiling has had. Providing examples from forensic science cases in the UK, US, and other countries, he considers the techniques and challenges faced around the world. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Marine Biology: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Philip V. Mladenov

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199695059

Category: Science

Page: 156

View: 3466

In this Very Short Introduction, Philip Mladenov provides a fascinating overview of marine biology. Including a tour of marine life and marine processes that ranges from the polar oceans to tropical coral reefs, he outlines the principles of marine biology whilst demonstrating the fundamental impact humans have on the oceans and their ecology.

Hormones

A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Martin Luck

Publisher: American Chemical Society

ISBN: 0199672873

Category: Science

Page: 136

View: 1251

Hormones are vital to the workings of the body, and while many people are aware of what hormones do, few have an appreciation of the nature and importance of the endocrine system. In this very short introduction, Martin Luck explains what hormones are, what they do, where they come from, and how they work.

Perception: a Very Short Introduction

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Author: Brian J. Rogers,Brian Rogers

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0198791003

Category:

Page: 184

View: 8858

Perception is one of the oldest and most deeply investigated topics in the field of psychology, and it also raises some profound philosophical questions. It is concerned with how we use the information reaching our senses to guide and control our behavior as well as to create our particular, subjective experiences of the surrounding world. In this Very Short Introduction, Brian J. Rogers discusses the philosophical question of what it means to perceive, as well as describing how we are able to perceive the particular characteristics of objects and scenes such as their lightness, color, form, depth, and motion. What we perceive, however, does not always correspond to what exists in the world and, as Rogers shows, the study of illusions can be useful in telling us something about the nature and limitations of our perceptual processes. Rogers also explores perception from an evolutionary perspective, explaining how evolutionary pressures have shaped the perceptual systems of humans and other animals. He shows that perception is not necessarily a separate and independent process but rather part of a "perceptual system," involving both the extraction of perceptual information and the control of action. Rogers goes on to cover the significant progress made recently in the understanding of perception through the use of precise and controlled psychophysical methods, single cell recordings, and imaging techniques. There have also been many insights from attempts to model perceptual processes in artificial systems. As Rogers shows, these attempts have revealed how difficult it is to program machines to perform even the most simple of perceptual tasks that we take for granted. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Drugs

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Author: Les Iversen

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0198745796

Category:

Page: 144

View: 7892

The twentieth century saw a remarkable upsurge of research on drugs, with major advances in the treatment of bacterial and viral infections, heart disease, stomach ulcers, cancer, and metal illnesses. These, along with the introduction of the oral contraceptive, have altered all of our lives. There has also been an increase in the recreational use and abuse of drugs in the Western world. This Very Short Introduction, in its second edition, gives a non-technical account of how drugs work in the body. Reviewing both legal (alcohol, nicotine, and caffeine) and illegal drugs, Les Iversen disscusses why some are addictive, and whether drug laws need reform. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.