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Molecular Biology of the Cell (4th Ed) by B. Alberts et al.

 Molecular Biology of the Cell, Fourth Edition 



  • Bruce Alberts
  • Alexander Johnson
  • Julian Lewis
  • Martin Raff
  • Keith Roberts
  • Peter Walter


  • Hardcover: 1616 pages
  • Publisher: Garland; 4 edition (March 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 0815332181
  • Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 8.7 x 2.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.67 pounds


Book Description 

Molecular Biology of the Cell is the classic in-depth text reference in cell biology. By extracting the fundamental concepts from this enormous and ever-growing field, the authors tell the story of cell biology, and create a coherent framework through which non-expert readers may approach the subject. Written in clear and concise language, and beautifully illustrated, the book is enjoyable to read, and it provides a clear sense of the excitement of modern biology. Molecular Biology of the Cell sets forth the current understanding of cell biology (completely updated as of Autumn 2001), and it explores the intriguing implications and possibilities of the great deal that remains unknown.

The hallmark features of previous editions continue in the Fourth Edition. The book is designed with a clean and open, single-column layout. The art program maintains a completely consistent format and style, and includes over 1,600 photographs, electron micrographs, and original drawings by the authors. Clear and concise concept headings introduce each section. Every chapter contains extensive references. Most important, every chapter has been subjected to a rigorous, collaborative revision process where, in addition to incorporating comments from expert reviewers, each co-author reads and reviews the other authors’ prose. The result is a truly integrated work with a single authorial voice 

Book Info

Comprehensive text/reference covers what is known and what is unknown about the subject. Sections include an introduction, basic genetic mechanisms, methods, internal organization of the cell, and cells in their social context. Previous edition: c1994. CD contains video clips, animations, molecular structures, and high-resolution micrographs. DNLM: Cells.


CD contents are worth hundreds of dollars, June 1, 2002

I’m an amateur biologist, and a professional computer software engineer and product reviewer. A keen interest in the mechanics of genetic expression has drawn me to the beautiful details of cellular mechanics. While this book is everything the other reviewers say (and are qualified to say) it is, let me weigh in on the accompanying CD, which is an area in which I can claim some expertise.

The vast majority of CDs bundled with textbooks are afterthoughts — either an electronic copy of the text, or some lightly related adjunct materials, usually pulled from the public domain. MBotC is different. The CD is nothing short of breathtaking. A technical tour de force, this CD runs on both Mac and Windows, which is no mean feat. It leverages time-tested technologies such as Netscape, Java, and Quicktime to produce stunningly vivid presentations. It performs well, and is rock-solid stable.

Beyond flawless delivery, the content itself is brilliantly executed. This is largely original content developed for this book, and tied directly into the text chapter by chapter. You get narrated animations that show dozens of cellular processes in a way that catalyzes learning. Videos capture live microscopy showing ATP synthase rotors spinning, microtubules self-assembling, actin crawling, and mitosis mitoting. An image magnifier lets you browse photomicrographs in detail.

Most astounding of all is the seamless incorporation of a molecular viewer, the Chime Java browser plugin, which directly reads and interprets Protein Data Base (PDB) files and displays the models in interactive 3D. The CD includes hundreds of PDB models, including a wonderful reference library of amino acids, nucleotimes, lipids, and sugars.

The CD alone is worth hundreds of dollars, just in the labor expended to assemble material from labs around the world and organize it to fit the chapters of the text. I’ve used numerous of CDs promising to teach molecular biology, and nothing else comes remotely close to the quality and depth of this volume.

That you can buy the CD — with a ten-pound book attached — for [the price] is simply a miracle. It’s a no-brainer for anybody remotely interested in cell biology. If you’re one of them, you must buy this!