Books, Journals, New Media Section Editor: Harriet
S. Meyer, MD, Contributing Editor, JAMA; David H. Morse, MS, University
of Southern California, Norris Medical Library, Journal Review Editor.
This is a well thought-out and well put-together "cookbook" for those
just starting out in the relatively new field of bioinformatics and for occasional
users who need a concise and thorough reference on how to perform the tasks
it explains. The authors are highly experienced contributors in the field,
and their insights into what newcomers need to do and how they should do it
show through clearly.
Thorough recipes ("detailed steps lists") for how to use the many types
of software available are presented in a well annotated, step-by-step fashion.
Examples are well chosen and topical. Paragraphs explaining many of the critical
concepts necessary to understand and use the recipes effectively are an excellent
feature, for instance, "Making Sure You Have the Right Sequences and the Right
Methods" and "The Differences Between Prokaryotes and Eukaryotes." Another
excellent feature is the wealth of URLs for bioinformatics sites on the World
Wide Web. The number of bioinformatics tools available on the Internet has
burgeoned significantly over the last several years and continues to grow
rapidly weekly. The authors have done a good job of packing each chapter with
pertinent links, which they plan on updating periodically on their companion
Web site, http://www.dummies.com/extras/bioinformatics_fd/.
Bruce A. Luxon. BioinformaticsBioinformatics. JAMA. 2003;290(24):3255. doi:10.1001/jama.290.24.3255-a