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March 8, 1941

Unresting Cells

JAMA. 1941;116(10):1034. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820100128033

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The theme of this modern natural philosophy is borrowed from John Masefield:

What am I, Life? a thing of watery salt, Held in cohesion by unresting cells...?

The author has described in nontechnical language the organization of cells, the nature and functions of enzymes, the exchange of energy, and the phenomena of irritability and behavior. The earlier chapters lay the basis for presenting current knowledge and theories concerning immunity, growth, reproduction, aging, embryogeny and heredity. He has successfully analyzed and described how creatures work, "a formidable task... for the analysis soon leads to the microscopic cell, submicroscopic particles and films, complicated molecules and forces—phenomena far beyond the comfortable familiarity we all have with cats and caterpillars and crayfish." The book commends itself to the physician who would refresh his memory of the elementary aspects of biology andlearn of recent developments in this field. He will find it entertaining, instructive and authoritative. It has handsome illustrations, many of which are original, planned by the author and Mrs. Elizabeth Newhall and executed by her. One group of these cleverly depicts such varied scenes as the orderly weedings

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