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May 20, 1961

The Structure and Function of Muscle. Volume I: Structure. Volume II: Biochemistry and Physiology. Volume III: Pharmacology and Disease

JAMA. 1961;176(7):639. doi:10.1001/jama.1961.03040200075034

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This magnificent work consists of chapters contributed by a large and competent group of specialists, each dealing in his way with existing knowledge of muscle. The 12 chapters of Volume I deal mainly with the histology, development, and biochemistry of muscle. Volume II continues with biochemistry and goes on to biophysics and neurophysiology. Volume III is largely pharmacology and pathology.

In addition to the three varieties of human muscle—smooth, striated, and cardiac—the contractile apparatus of other species, including the invertebrates, is discussed. This is a matter of some interest because the high frequencies attained by the wings of small insects, for example, are relevant to the recent controversy about the means by which the human larynx produces high soprano notes.

The book abounds in interesting material recently supplied by the techniques of modern chemistry and physics. Examples are the x-ray methods that have revealed the configuration of fibrous muscle proteins;

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