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Book Review Synthetic Methods of Organic Chemistry. By W. Theilheimer. Yearbook 1963. Vol. 17 (with a key to the subject index etc

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Accompanying the brochure is a condensed survey giving the
development of technology from the preparation of flint Celts
600000 years ago to the development of thc art of tanning
and pottery and up to the beginning of the Bron7e Age
(4000 B.C.).
The text is supplemented by a host of instructive illustrations.
Only with the colored plates of the animal pictures would
one have wished for something more impressive.
U . Hofmann
[ N B 179174 IE]
Enzyme im Blutplasma (Enzymes in Blood Plasma). By B.
Hess. Biochemistry and the Clinic - Monographs edited
by G. Weitzel and N . Zollner. Georg Thieme Verlag,
Stuttgart 1962. 1st. edit., VIII, 142 pp., 33 illust., 13 tables,
stiff covers D M 29.70 (about $ 7.50).
The measurement of enzyme activities in serum has acquired
great interest in clinical diagnosis within the last decade.
Hess gives an excellent summary of the results to date in this
field in a text intended primarily for the orientation of the
clinician. However, the biochemist also receives a very lucid
survey of the vast possibilities for applying enzyme assays in
clinical practice. The most important items are selected from
the glut of literature available and presented in concise form,
so that the book provides at the same time a valuable approach to the literature. The value of this undertaking is all
the greater, because the non-specialist is no longer able to
survey the literature in this field on his own, and a similar
concentrated exposition of recent information does not exist
in the German language. The book contains about 600
references, unfortunately quoted without titles, as is usual
in the series “Biochemistry and the Clinic.”
The book deals with fundamentals (systematics o f plasma
enzymes; identification methods; isozymes, enzyme patterns; mechanism of enzyme liberation; origin, synthesis,
and breakdown of plasma enzymes; etc.), and then with the
pathology and clinical implications of serum enzymes, arranged according to disease groups. The last section deals
summarily with questions of method: theoretical bases of
activity tests, definitions of units, assay conditions. The
author’s clear, concise style has resulted in a presentation,
which remains fluently readable, despite the large number
of facts communicated in relatively small space, so that the
outsider is presented with a valuable survey; at the same time,
the expert finds a n abundance of information on details of
D.~ , ~ [NB~ 177/79
clinical enzyme diagnostics.
Synthetic Methods of Organic Chemistry. By W. Theilheimer.
Yearbook 1963. Vol. 17 (with a key to the subject index,
etc. in German). Verlag S. Karger AG., Basel-New York
1963. 1st Edit., XVI, 507 pp., clothbound DM 150.-.
When leafing through Volume 17 of “Synthetic Methods”,
one again finds a wealth of original reactions, many of which
can be applied more generally. The whole field of organic
chemistry is covered by 955 examplex. The syntheses extend
over numerous types of compounds, including the carbon
compounds of hetero-elements (particularly phosphorus, sulfur, and boron). Reagents and methods (photochemical reactions, for instance) are classified seperately and also cover
a wide field. Chemists working on synthetic problems can
again find constant help in this selection. This presupposes,
however, adeptness in the use of the logically arranged subject
index, although the extensive list of terms included gives a
great deal of information. Because this yearbook is so valuable, an additional punched card index should be issued at
least every five years to facilitate literature screening.
Once again t i x binding and print are excellent.
S. Huaig [NB 137/69 IE]
Grundlagen der Arzneimittelforschung und der synthetischen
Arzneimittel (Fundamentals of Drug Research and of Synthetic Drugs). By J. Buchi. Chemical Series Volume 15.
Textbooks and Monographs from the Realms of the Exact
Sciences. Birkhauser Verlag, Basel, Stuttgart 1963. 1st edit.,
744 pp., numerous figs., tables, and formulae, linen
D M 96.- (about $ 24.00).
Drug research, in the author’s opinion, includes all fields
which are involved in the development of new pharmaceuticals. These include problems in the chemical and physicochemical fields, such as the synthesis, analytical characterization, and conversion of drugs into a suitable form for
administration. In addition, there is pharmacological testing
on animals and also clinical evaluation. The aims of systematic
drug research include appraisal of the relationships between
the pharmacological action and chemical constitution or
physico-chemical properties of drugs as well as their mode
3f action and their biochemical transformations in organisms.
Of a book that, according to the introduction, is intended
“to provide the basic principles of this field of knowledge for
students and professionals who wish to be trained or informed in some branch or other o f drug research” one can
scarcely demand that all the aspects mentioned should be
treated exhaustively; this would ask too much of a single
author. The same is true of one reviewer. The chemist will be
primarily interested in the chapters dealing with preparative
and analytical problems, which constitute about one-third of
the volume. The work contains no information on syntheses,
but the structural formulae of very many substances are
given; they serve as examples of the connections between
chemical variation and parallelism or modification of
activity, which are organized into more or less firm rules. One
must admire the author’s familiarity with the literature and
one is amazed at the predictions to which the principle o f
chemical similarity can occasionally lead. Of course, most of
the rules are the result of postexperimental interpretation,
and for most of them, contrary examples are also indicated
or are not difficult to find. The purely pharmaceutical
chapters, e.g. that on the influence on activity of different
modes of application or that on the conversion of drug substances into drug forms, are valuable and illustrated with
many examples. The characterization of chemical analytical
testing methods is also comprehensive and thorough.
The reading of the book, the title of which is somewhat unhappily chosen, will no doubt be stimulating to any chemist
interested in pharmaceuticals, but an uncritical reader may
possibly be led to believe that new drugs will very soon be
developed “by constructive planning” on the basis of theoretical speculations. U p to now, the discovery of new kinds of
drugs has been due, at all events, quite predominantly to
empiricism, i.e. either to schematic pharmacological testing
of innumerable chemical compounds or to chance observations, which were then developed systematically with due
regard to all previous experiences.
H. B6hme
[NB 178176 IE]
Registered names, trademarks, etc. used in this journal, even without specific indication thereof, are not to be considered unprotected by law.
0 1964 by Verlag Chemie, GmbH. - Printed in Germany by Druckerei Winter, Heidelberg.
All rights reserved. No part of this journal may be reproduced in any form whatsoever, e.g. by photoprint, microfilm, or any other means, without
written permission from the publishers.
Editorial Office: Ziegelhauser Landstrasse 35, Heidelberg, Germany, Telephone 24975, Telex 04-61 855, Cable address: Chemieredaktion Heidelberg.
Chief Editor: W . Foersri . Editor: H . Grunewald.
Publishers: Verlag Chemie GmbH. (President Eduard Kreurhage), Pappelallee 3 , WeinheimjEergstr., Germany, and Academic Press Inc. (President
Walter J . Johnson), 11 1 Fifth Avenue, New York 3, N.Y., U.S.A., and Berkeley Square House, Berkeley Square, London, W. 1, England.
Correspondence concerning advertisements should by addressed to Verlag Chemie, GmbH. (Advertising Manager W.Thiel), Pappelallee 3, WeinheimBergstr., Germany, Telephone Weinheim 3635, Telex 04-65 516. Cable address: Chemieverlag Weinheimbergstr.
Angew. Chem. internat. Edit
Vol 3 (1964) 1 No. 7
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organiz, method, 1963, index, chemistry, synthetic, theilheimer, book, key, etc, yearbook, vol, review, subjects
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