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Physiology and biochemistry of the skin. By Stephen Rothman. University of Chicago Press. xiii + 741 pp. 1954. $19.50

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636
AMERICAN JOURNAL
OF PHYSICAL ANTHROPOLOGY
PHYSIOLOGY AND BIOCHEMISTRY O F T H E SKIN. By Stephen
Rothman. University of Chicago Press. xiii 741 pp. 1954.
$19.50.
+
Physiology and Bwohenzistyy of the Ski% by Stephen Rothman (of
the University of Chicago) and 6 collaborators is a n encyclopaedic,
useful and outstanding book, though priced somewhat beyond the
reach of the individual budget. I n its 741 pages there are 28 chapters,
7 of them written by collaborators, each copiously illustrated and
furnished with a most complete list of references. The author index
is keyed to the chapter bibliographies as well as to the textual references, thus giving this book the status of a bibliographic work.
It is difficult to single out those chapters of most interest, to physical
anthropologists, for all of them are intriguing and will divert any
reader not strongly steeled against browsing. However, chapters 6
(sweat secretion), 10 (the role of the skin in thermoregulation), 22
(pigmentation) and 26 (hair growth) will prove immeasurably
useful in bringing lecture notes up to date. Special mention should
be made of chapter 16 (the keratinization process).
Throughout, Doctor Rothman and his associates display a heartening
interest in evolution, and in the adaptive nature of specific dermal
modifications.. They explore the various racial differences in the
skin, hair and associated glands. Selected quotations may serve as
samples.
“Phylogenetically, the loss of a natural f u r coat in man had
gone hand in hand with the development of eccrine sweat glands
over the entire skin surface and with a n efficient nervous and humoral
control of the sweat apparatus. Thereby man has acquired protection
ugainst sevei-e hcat fur superior to that of other an/imds.’’ (p. 603).
(The italics are the reviewer’s.)
‘‘ The pigmentary nature of melanin further serves to offer some
protection against harmful excessive solar radiation and constitutes
a n important component of eye structure for effcient function. ” (p.
520).
“Differences between white and Negro adults were quite pronounced,
Negro men having 70% more hair fat than white men, and Negro
women about 60% more than white women.” (p. 297).
STANLEY
MARIONGARN
Fels Research Institute
Antioch College
HUMAK HEREDITY. By James V. Nee1 and William J. Schull.
University of Chicago Press. 1954. 361 pp. $6.00.
Although the science of genetics, dating from the rediscovery of
Mendel’s work at the beginning of this century, is not. really a new
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xiii, university, 1954, skin, stephen, biochemistry, rothman, pres, chicago, physiology, 741
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