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Book Review Amorphous Inorganic Materials and Glasses. By A. Feltz

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BOOKS
of researchers is evident. This does not
really apply to Hiroshi, whose chief interest anyway is his lyric poetry. Also for
Charlea the project is interesting for another reason, namely to explore the limits
of the possible. Max is in a somewhat different position, since he is beginning to
gather ideas for a later date in order to
publish them independently. The crucial
stumbling block, however, is Sepp Krzilska. who considers the whole discovery
his idea. For him it is a matter of utmost
importance, and at all events he wishes to
publish under his own name. An additional problem is that the fictional Diana
Skordylis is increasingly dragged into the
limelight of the scientific public-at first
she escapes, pleading “personal circumstances”-until
the award of the
renowned Levenson Prize exposes the
whole affair.
What makes this book a particular
pleasure to read is the excellent detailed
knowledge of the author. It makes the tale
so realistic that it could, in principle, happen at any time (or perhaps has happened
somewhere already?). The showplaces of
the plot--whether they be the annual conference of the National Academy of Sciences. the Virgin Islands, the Isle of
Capri, or the Villa Malaparte-are
described with a remarkable precision. In
addition, topical themes such as the position of women in the natural sciences are
also discussed. Furthermore, the story of
the love affair between two septuagenarians is charming.
If one expects to be informed and/or
entertained by literature, whatever the
genre, this tale by Djerassi from the world
of chemistry and biochemistry does both.
What more can one hope for? Give us the
third volume of the series (i.e. make it a
veritable PCR, a poetry chain reaction),
which is rumored to appear next year and
certainly will extend Djerassi’s (science)
park by another colorful sector, as soon
as possible.
Henning Hopj; Andreus Plugens
Institut fur Organische Chemie
der Technischen Universitat
Braunschweig (FRG)
amorphous state of matter. the author
and publishers have set out through this
English translation to bring it to a wider
international readership. Its format and
size are largely unchanged, but the style of
production is more up-to-date and the
new two-column layout emphasizes the
author’s concise and informative style of
writing. and leads the reader in a clear way
through the great wealth of data that the
book contains.
However, when one begins to examine
the contents in detail it becomes evident, if
one has not already realized this, that it is
essentially just a one-to-one translation of
the German version. The list of contents
(9pp.) has exactly the same length and
exactly the same unclear structure as its
predecessor. It could undoubtedly have
been made more useful and informative
by putting less emphasis on the fine detail
of the less important topics and instead
highlighting the main topics. The subject
index (1 1 pp.) is only slightly longer than
in the original version and consequently
does not contain much more information.
After a brief introduction the second
chapter is entitled “The Amorphous and
Vitreous State of Inorganic Materials”,
and deals with the conditions needed For
preparing glasses and amorphous solids,
the thermodynamic description of the
glassy state, and the types of phase transformations that can occur in such systems. In the section on the characterization of the structures of noncrystalline
materials the main approaches discussed
are the various diffraction methods (Xrays, electrons, and neutrons) and spectroscopic methods (IR, Raman, N M R ,
UV, Mossbauer, and EXAFS spectroscopies). In the section on the electronic
states in noncrystalline solids the author
develops theoretical models for describing
the phenomenon of electrical conduction
in amorphous substances.
The third and longest chapter, “Amorphous and Glass-Forming Substances”,
begins with elements and alloys, including
metallic glasses and amorphous nonmetals ranging from boron to arsenic and
antimony. Other glass-forming systems
are then discussed, beginning with the
various binary compounds and moving
on to the ternary chalcogenide systems.
Chapter 4, “Electrical Conductivity
Amorphous Inorganic Materials and
Glasses. By A . Feltz. VCH Verlags- and Optical Properties of Glasses and
gesellschaft, Weinheim/VCH Pub- Amorphous Solids”. describes these phelishers, New York, 1993. 440pp., nomena in detail, covering aspects such as
hardcover
DM 198.00.-ISBN 3- the mechanism of charge transport and
photoinduced structural changes in
527-28421-4/1-56081-212-5
glasses.
The publication of a translation of a
Almost ten years after the publication
of the original German edition of this now ten-year-old book prompts one to ask
well-established standard work on the whether the subject matter remains up-to-
~
~
_ _ _ _ ~
date, since even in the field of amorphous
materials, research has not stood still during the last decade. The first four chapters
have been updated only by briefly outlining the latest developments at the ends of
the chapters. Chapter 5, “Applications”,
is much better in this respect, as it has
undergone a considerably more thorough
revision. The topics discussed include the
latest trends and developments in applications of the semiconducting properties of
certain glasses and amorphous films, the
use of optical glasses for I R transmission,
and information storage based on the
structural changes that take place in
glasses.
The aspects to be criticized, as in the
case of the contents list already mentioned, relate only to the formal presentation. Thus, the bibliographies are, as in
the German version, collected together at
the ends of the chapters. As a result of
this, especially for references that extend
across chapters, the corresponding citation in the text can only be found by a
time-consuming search through the book
or by consulting the not very clear list of
contents followed by much flipping of
pages. Also the old consecutive numbering system based on the German text has
been retained, so that new citations that
have been inserted into the text have been
assigned numbers that break the original
numbering scheme. On the other hand the
figures, which have only undergone slight
changes, are clear and are a great help to
understanding many of the points mentioned in the text.
The information has been assembled
with great care, involving an enormous
amount of work and attention to detail.
This is especially evident in the literature
references, of which there are over 2000;
their number does not fully reflect the vast
amount of individual data, as many of
these relate to monographs and review articles. The wealth of information is impressive, and could only be presented in
this form through the author’s precise and
economical style. However, the desire to
cover all the results and theories on the
amorphous state within a limited space
has unfortunately meant that some aspects, such as the sol -gel process o r solidstate N M R spectroscopy, could only be
treated briefly. The reader who would like
to learn more about such topics will certainly be disappointed at first glance on
opening this book. But on examining it
more carefully he or she will find that the
literature references open up access to the
whole range of the subject. In any case,
everyone interested in obtaining a comprehensive overview of the subject will
find this book indispensable. It is to be
BOOKS
hoped that this English edition will be as
well received internationally as the original version has been in the Germanspeaking world.
Huns Reuter
Institut fur Anorganische Chemie
der Universitat Osnabruck (FRG)
Methods of Immunological Analysis.
VCH Verlagsgesellschaft, Weinheim/
VCH Publishers, New York, 1993.
Vol. 1 : Fundamentals. Edited by R. f;:
Musseyc$f,
W H.
Albert
and
N . A . Stuincs. 715 pp., hardcover
DM 410.00, $265.00.--ISBN 3-52727906-7/0-89573-902-X; Vol. 2: Samples and Reagents. Edited by K H .
Albert and N . A . Stuines. 591 pp.,
hardcover DM 410.00, $265.00.ISBN 3-527-27907-510-89573-903-8;
Vol. 3: Cells and Tissues. Edited by
R . E M u s s ~ ~ j ~ eW.
f f , H . Albert and
N . A . Stuines. 603 pp., hardcover
DM 410.00, $265.00.-ISBN 3-52727908-310-89573-904-6
This is a very comprehensive work with
an excellent arrangement of the contents.
In view of the rapid developments occurring in immunochemistry, this three-volume set appears at just the right time. In
Volume 1 the basic concepts of immunological analysis are explained, and the
most important and well-established
methods are described in detail. The chapter entitled “Molecular Basis of AntigenAntibody Reactions” is especially good,
giving a concise but thoroughly comprehensive account of the state of knowledge
up to the beginning of 1991. As well as
structural aspects of antigen-antibody
reactions, the kinetics and thermodynamics of such reactions are discussed in detail. Another important quantity in relation to antigen -antibody reactions is the
cross-reactivity, which is discussed using
the example of the steroid ring skeleton.
This chapter ends with a very nice contribution on “Factors Modulating Antigenicity”. The chapters on “Methods Using Labeled Reagents” and “Labels and
their Measurement” give an up-@-date
survey of important reagents (tracers) and
the methods for detecting them. These
chapters are indispensable for choosing a
suitable detection system. The discussion
here is soundly based and thorough, and
includes structural formulas.
Volume 2 describes the preparation and
characterization of reagents used in immunological analysis. As well as explaining the theory of the methods, the chapters include practical advice on carrying
them out and suggestions for overcoming
problems, showing that the authors have
much experience in everyday laboratory
practice. Sections 4.1 to 4.5, devoted entirely to antibodies, deserve a special mention. With over 280 pages these are practically a book in themselves, containing
detailed treatments of the advantages and
disadvantages of polyclonal and monoclonal antibodies, the modification of antibodies, and antibodies with special
properties, e.g. catalytic antibodies.
Chapter 5 is concerned with chemical coupling and derivatization methods, which
are indispensable for applications in immunochemistry. The various methods are
described in a clear and easily understandable way, with selected examples of laboratory procedures based on different
chemical approaches. However, some of
the most elegant coupling methods that
have been reported in the literature are
not mentioned. Also the importance of
immunoaffinity columns and the methods
for preparing them are not given enough
emphasis.
Volume 3 gives a comprehensive overview of immunological methods for the
analysis of cells and tissues. Tn addition
considerable space is devoted to cell
preparation and cell culture, which are
very important as preliminaries to the
analysis of cells and tissues. The first
90 pages contain very detailed descriptions of the isolation of cells and tissues,
which even relatively inexperienced users
should be capable of following without
difficulty. The main emphasis is on human cell systems, but adequate attention
is also given to experimental animal and
plant systems. Some basic principles of
cell culture for the types of cell systems
mentioned above are then explained, with
careful distinctions according to the different systems. The chapter on “Methods
of Phenotype Analysis” (over 180 pp.) is
especially useful, covering all aspects of
immunocytochemistry from general principles to detailed laboratory methods. often giving several alternatives and including references. Everyone acquainted with
such methods knows that it is necessary to
vary a large number of experimental
parameters to arrive at conditions giving
the best results. Surprisingly. some important new detection methods based on immunohistochemical and. most notably,
immunofluorescence techniques, which
are also capable of yielding quantitative
information at the single cell level (e.g.
through the distribution of damage in
D N A ) , are not covered. This is an area
which should definitely be included in the
next edition.
To sum up, this is a work that will be of
value throughout the field of immunological analysis. It includes a wealth of references covering the period up to the beginning of 1991, and thus serves as a guide to
the original literature. This series of volumes will be essential for every laboratory
concerned with immunochemistry.
Kurl-Hi%i; Gliiscnkmnp
Institut fur Zellbiologie
der Universitat-Gesamthochschule
Essen (FRG)
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