Medical Biotechnology

Authors: Bernard R. Glick1, Terry L. Delovitch2, Cheryl L. Patten3
Affiliations: 1: Department of Biology, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada; 2: Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Western University, London, Ontario, Canada; 3: Biology Department, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada
Content Type: Textbook
Format: Hardcover
Publication Year: 2014

Category: Applied and Industrial Microbiology

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Biotechnology is delivering not only new products to diagnose, prevent, and treat human disease but entirely new approaches to a wide range of difficult biomedical challenges. Because of advances in biotechnology, hundreds of new therapeutic agents, diagnostic tests, and vaccines have been developed and are available in the marketplace.

In this jargon-free, easy-to-read textbook, the authors demystify the discipline of medical biotechnology and present a roadmap that provides a fundamental understanding of the wide-ranging approaches pursued by scientists to diagnose, prevent, and treat medical conditions.

is written to educate premed and medical students, dental students, pharmacists, optometrists, nurses, nutritionists, genetic counselors, hospital administrators, and individuals who are stakeholders in the understanding and advancement of biotechnology and its impact on the practice of modern medicine.

will be an essential textbook for senior undergraduate and postgraduate courses in biotechnology in many universities.”

—Michael Butler, Department of Microbiology, University of Manitoba

For more on the book and information on requesting an examination copy please visit http://www.asmscience.org/examrequest/requestform

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Doody's Review Service

14 May 2014


This book illustrates how biotechnology has impacted the practice of medicine in the last 40 years, relating relevant foundational information to therapeutic agent discovery, disease diagnosis, and clinical intervention.


The purpose is to demystify the discipline of medical biotechnology and its impact on modern medicine by providing an appreciation of methods pursued by scientists to develop better diagnostic, prevention, and treatment options. The authors have undoubtedly achieved their goal: those seeking a fundamental understanding of biotechnological advances will surely be satisfied.


The book is written for individuals seeking a deeper understanding of biotechnological advances impacting the practice of modern medicine. Therefore, premedical and medical students, students from related healthcare fields (e.g. dentistry, pharmacy, nursing), as well as genetic counselors, physicians, and hospital administrators will find this book relevant. All three authors are well-established professors with vast teaching and research experience in areas directly related to this field. Drs. Glick and Patten have also coauthored <B><I>Molecular Biotechnology: Principles and Applications of Recombinant DNA</I></B>, 4th edition (ASM Press, 2010).


This beautifully illustrated book is jargon-free and presents information in an easy-to-follow format. The first of its three main sections covers the fundamental principles of biology, immunology, genetics, microbiology, and pathology required to understanding biotechnologies. The two chapters in the second section introduce various approaches to produce therapeutic agents, while the final section discusses diagnostic methods currently used in the laboratory and the therapeutic approaches developed through the use of biotechnologies, including vaccines. The final chapter is especially refreshing since it broaches safety, ethical, patent, and economic issues related to biotechnology. As readers might expect, techniques used in the laboratory and experimental approaches used in the development of biotechnological advances are strongly emphasized, which greatly enhances the value of the book. The table of contents and the detailed index allow for easy navigation, while the glossary simplifies the learning experience. Some interesting features include the use of boxes to highlight topics or emphasize key concepts; end-of-chapter summaries; and the series of review questions to monitor reader comprehension.

This book does not have any shortcomings per se, but readers should appreciate that topics it covers are those specifically relevant to the understanding of biotechnologies -- in other words, this book is not designed to fully cover any given subject. Altogether, it is a valuable learning tool for individuals seeking a deeper understanding of the application of biotechnologies to the practice of medicine. 


This book is a unique blend of basic knowledge and experimental strategy that will surely be beneficial for anyone wishing to understand how biotechnology enhances the practice of medicine. Readers should keep in mind that it is not meant to be a medical textbook or an all-encompassing reference. It instructs on the application of biotechnology to the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of disease, and it does so efficiently and intelligently. 


Reviewer: Sophie La Salle, PhD(Midwestern University Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine)

Review Date: April 2014

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