Biochemical Determinants of Microbial Diseases

Harvard University of Monographs in Medicine and Public Health, Number 13, by Rene J. Dubos, The Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research. 152 pages. Cambridge, Mass., Harvard University Press, 1954. Price $3.50

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It is approximately 10 years since Dubos' modern microbiological classic “The Bacterial Cell” was published. That book brought together much information but of greater importance expressed the author's advanced ideas about the relationship of cell properties and components to problems of infection and specific immunity. The present monograph is written from the viewpoint of the interaction between host and agent and indicates the shift in emphasis that has occurred in the study of pathogenesis of infectious processes. The author is one of the most provocative workers and thinkers in the whole field of medicine and he has had a large and beneficial influence on microbiological thought. In part this is due to his great skill as an investigator, but perhaps equally to his boldness in speculating on the results of his own work and that of others.

The present volume presents a host of unanswered problems in the pathogenesis of infectious diseases.