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Book Review Topics in Phosphorus Chemistry Vol. 1. Edited by M. Grayson and E

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Purines, Pyrimidines, and Nucleotides, and the Chemistry of
Nucleic Acids. A Course in Organic Chemistry. Edited by
R . Robinson. Advanced Section Vol. XXV. By T. L. V.
Ulbricht. The Commonwealth and International Library.
Edited by R. Maxwell. The Macmillan Company, New
York, and Pergamon Press, Oxford-London-EdinburghParis-Frankfurt 1964. 1st Edit., V11+ 79 pp., 1 illustration,
G 0.12.6.
It is no easy undertaking to condense the chemistry of the
purines, pyrimidines, and nucleotides into a 75-page monograph in such a way as to produce a well-rounded and easily
understandable review. The purpose of the prcscnt monograph is to provide an introduction to the fundamentals of
the chemistry of purines and pyrimidincs, since this is dealt
with only very bdefly in most text-books of organic chemistry, particularly those written in English. The author, himself a well-known worker in this field, manages to present an
excellent Survey in only 60 pages and references to original
pupers are given at the end of each chapter for those who
wish to make a deeper study. It is questionable, however,
whether the chapter on nucleic acids (10 pages) should have
been included in this short monograph.
F. Crumer
[NB 423/294 IE]
Nucleolides and Coenzymes. By D . W . Hurchinson. Methuen’s
Monographs on Biological Subjects. Edited by R. Peters
and F. G. Young, Methuen & Co., London, J. Wiley &
Sons, lnc., New York, 1964. 1st Edit., VIII + 136 pp.
c 0.18.0.
This booklet is intended as a chemical supplement to the
widely-read “Biochemistry of Nucleic Acids” by J. N. Duvidson (“The Child’s Guide to the Nucleic Acids”), with
particular reference to low-molecular weight compounds.
The discussions cover nucleosides, nucleotides, oligonucleotides, and polynucleotides, as well as the nucleotide
coenzymes, pyridoxal phosphate and thiamine pyrophosphate. A wealth of data is presented in a well-organized
manner and supported by extensive bibliographies at the
ends of the chapters. Biochemical aspects are taken into
account but the emphasis is plaoed on the chemical viewpoint.
A number of inaccuracies will undoubtedly be corrected in a
second edition. For example, the biosynthesis of pseudouriane can by no means be regarded as having been generally
elucidated, and the model for the secondary structure of
sRNA has now been revised. Formulae of the nucleosides are
not given in the usual, stereochemically unambigous notation.
In spite of these minor short-comings, the book undoubtedly
offcrs a good introduction to the nucleotide field.
H. G. Zachaii
[NB 413i285 IE]
Topics in Phosphorus Chemistry, Vol. 1. Edited by M. Gruyson
and E. Griffirh. Interscience Publishers, a Division of J.Wilev & Sons, New York-London-Sydney 1964. 1st Edit.,
VII 262 pp., numerous illustrations and tables, G 4.10.0.
+
Owing to the constant increase in the number of publications
in the phosphorus field, hand-books such as “Kosolapoff”
very quickly become outdated. It is therefore gratifying to
find that this series, the first volume of which is now available,
presents a condensed review a f e a e b of the various topics.
The first three contributions deal wlth the organic chemistry
of phosphorus, i. e. the prepatatlon of organophosphorus
compounds from elementary phosphorus, nucleophilic substitutions on phosphofus halides and esters by Grignard and
organolitihium compounds, and the Michaelis-Arbuzov and
related mrictions. The next two chapters are devoted to the
foilawing Inorganic topics: acids of trivalent phosphorus and
their salts, and condensed phosphates containing other oxyacids. The authors of the various chapters have all published
papers on the topics in question, so that the problems really
264
have been critically evaluated by specialists. Comprehensive
lists of references enable the reader to make a more profound
study of the subject. However, the earliest publications should
at least have been mentioned. For example, the rearrange4
4
ment of anhydrous P-P- acid was first observed by Nylen,
whereas the preparation of salts of this acid from red phosphorus and chlorous acid was first described by Leininger
and Chulski.
This book will be of value not only to the specialist, but also
to chemists working in other fields. Thc presentation is fluid
and clear, and the book nowhere gives the impression of
being a reference work. K . - H . worms [NB 418/290 IE]
Boron, Metallo-Boron Compounds, and Boranes. Edited by
R . M . Adams. Interscience Publishers, a Division of John
Wiley & Sons, New York-London-Sydney 1964. 1st Edit.,
XXIII 765 pp., several illustrations and tables, E 10.7.0.
+
Knowledge of the chemistry of boron compounds has greatly
increased over the last few years. This is reflected in the large
number of articles that, like the present book, present a
condensed report of a part of the field.
Two contributions on the discovery, occurrence, and technology of the borate minerals and on the behavior of borates
in aqueous solutions ( W . A . Gale) are followed by a longer
chapter on the structures, properties, and reactions of inorganic compounds of boron and oxygen ( N . P. Niess and
G. W . Camp3ell). A . E. Newkirk presents a very detailed
account of the preparation and properties of elementary
boron. B. Posf contributes an excellent section on the rcfractory binary borides and their chemical and electrical
properties. This is followed by two comprehensive chapters
(320pp.) on boron-hydrogen compounds (boranates by R . M .
Adams and R . A. Seidle; boranes by $4 M. Adums).
Simple metal and onium monoboranates are described in
detail, organoboranates and ollgo- and polyboranates also
being taken into account. The text IS supplemented by several
illustrations and tables relating to the physical properties of
the compounds (infrared spectra, IIB-fiMR spectra, mass
spectra). The last chapter ( G . J . Levinkas) deals with the
toxicity of beron compounds (BO, BH, and BC compounds,
among others1
The chapters are subdivided in such a way that the reader
can quickly find any given topic. The book has a formula
index and a subject index, but no author index. The English
language literature has been taken fairly fully into account
up to 1962, and in some cases even up to 1964. Misprints
( e . g . pp. 554, 562) and incorrect references (e.g. p. 571) are
not serious. In many instances the reviewer felt that a
summing-up would have been welcome. The editor should
have dealt with nomenclature in a general chapter, instead
of including it in the individual discussions (pp. 54, 373, 508,
706). Once again, however, the need for standardization of
the nomenclature of boron compounds becomes obvious.
This well presented, but unfortunately very expensive book
is a valuable synopsis and should be included in the library
of anyone working in this field. It can be recommended to
anyone wishing to familiarize himself with the chemistry
of boron. It is to be hoped that the series which is intended
to cover the “Entire Scope of Boron Chemistry” will very
soon be continued in the form of good monographic chapters
R. Kosfer
[NB 4151287 IE]
of the same type.
New Methods of Analytical Chemistry. By R . Belcher and
C. L. Wilson, with the collaboration of T. S. West. Chapman
and Hall Ltd., London 1964, 2nd Edit., XV + 366 pp.,
numerous tables, f; 3.0.0.
The “new” methods described in the first edition (1956) have
now become common knowledge or have been found to be
of little value. In order to justify its title, therefore, the second
Angew. Chem. internat. Edit.
VoI. 5 (1966) No. 2
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