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The author has embodied an interesting and valuable concept in an excellent book. The story of one particular drug, presented from several different viewpoints, can, if well told, hold great fascination and have a broad appeal. Bové's work on ergot does precisely this and will interest a wide range of readers.
The book has three major divisions. The first takes up the biological aspects of ergot, along with various other factors that are included in the category of "pharmacognosy." There is, at the same time, a fairly detailed history of ergot and the diseases that it causes. The second main division deals with the chemistry, biosynthesis, and chemical assay; while the third presents the physiology, pharmacology, and clinical uses. There are excellent bibliographies. Rarely will we find a single book which will make an appeal on a sophisticated level to such a wide range of readers in so many different
King LS. The Story of Ergot: for Physicians, Pharmacists, Nurses, Biochemists, Biologists and Others Interested in the Life Sciences. JAMA. 1970;212(8):1382. doi:10.1001/jama.1970.03170210086036