Justification for writing this monograph (as stated in the preface) was to enlighten the practicing physician and others whose biological education occurred before the era of molecular biology. Unfortunately, the promise of "an organized, compact, and reasonably complete statement of present knowledge" is not fulfilled. A major defect is the lack of unity and integration between the six chapters which vary considerably in quality.
Chapter 1, "Nucleic Acids and Nucleoproteins," is authored by the editor. It contains too many factual errors, and the reviewer had the uncomfortable feeling that the author was out of his element. He refers erroneously to the "alpha"-helical structure of deoxyribonucleic acid. Polynucleotide phosphorylase is confused with ribonucleic acid polymerase. I found it necessary to check statements against other sources constantly.
Chapter 2, "Protein Structure and Function," by Ghiron is poorly done and also contains many errors. For example: on page 59, it is stated that