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Sept 4, 1967

The Mathematical Approach to Biology and Medicine

Author Affiliations

Raleigh, NC

JAMA. 1967;201(10):784. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03130100082035

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This is Professor Bailey's fourth book dealing with various mathematical aspects of biology. Like the others, it is confined mostly to the biometrical, probabilistic, and statistical aspects. Even so, many common, underlying mathematical principles and points of view are skillfully and somewhat leisurely expounded, in close relationship to many interesting and pertinent examples. The book may be criticized by strict determinists because of its preoccupation with stochastic representations. However, where deterministic and stochastic models occur as alternatives, he does a creditable job of presenting, relating, and comparing both.

The book is divided into two parts. The first serves as a general introduction to probabilistic biomathematics and, more particularly, to the selected mathematical models of part 2. Its six chapters are devoted to the need for mathematical representation in biological and other scientific studies, probabilistic and statistical reasoning, mathematics and the scientific method, the operational research method, the influence of computers,