Short review items

Science in the marketplace: nineteenth-century sites and experiences

Ayleen Fyfe and Bernard Lightman (Eds) 

Chicago: University of Chicago Press 2007 | 432pp | ?25.99(HB) ISBN 978-0226276502  

This multi-authored book arose from a conference at York in 2004. The contributors are distinguished historians of science and describe the burgeoning interest in science during the 19th century, and how this (laymen’s) enthusiasm was accommodated by a growth of popular lectures and magazines, museums and exhibitions. Readers will find out a lot about the ’science’ of phrenology, but will have to look hard to find chemical content. 

The big Fat Duck cookbook

Heston Blumenthal 

London, UK: Bloomsbury Publishing 2008 | 532pp | ?100 (HB) ISBN 9781596915503 

This large loose-leaf collection gives the full story of the meteoric rise of Heston Blumenthal and The Fat Duck restaurant, birthplace of snail porridge and bacon-and-egg ice cream. 

The book starts with a history of the restaurant from its humble beginnings to its third Michelin star and its accolade of Best Restaurant in the World by a peer group of top chefs. This introduction is followed by 50 of Blumenthal’s signature recipes - sardines on toast sorbet, salmon poached with liquorice etc.  

The scientific know-how behind Blumenthal’s work is described, including his hallmark obsession with such questions as how smell affects taste, what different flavours mean to us on a biological level, or how temperature is distributed in the centre of a souffl?. Diverse subjects as synaesthesia, creaminess and flavour expectation are all explored. 

See Chemistry World  , May 2005, p34 for more information on the science behind Blumenthal’s work.

Miniaturization and mass spectrometry

S?verine Le Gac and Albert van den Berg (eds) 

Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press 2009 | 315pp | ?89.95 (HB) ISBN 9780854041299 

This book focuses on the use of microfluidics coupled to mass spectrometry in the analysis of very small samples. 

Various examples of the application of this microfluidics-MS hyphenated analysis technique to proteomics, metabolomics, organic chemistry and forensics are presented. 

Collected papers on philosophy of chemistry 

Eric R Scerri 

London, UK: Imperial College Press 2008 | 235pp | ?49.00 (HB) ISBN 9781848161375 

This is a compilation of papers previously published by the author in a variety of books and journals. 

The book provides an in-depth examination of Scerri’s more philosophical and historical work in the area of the Periodic Table and further afield. 

Drugs from discovery to approval 

Rick Ng 

Hoboken, New Jersey, US: Wiley-Blackwell  2009 | 466pp | ?52.95 (HB) ISBN 9780470195109 

The second edition of a book that offers a user-friendly step-by-step introduction to all the key processes involved in bringing a drug to the market, including the performance of preclinical trials. 

Therapeutic oligonucleotides 

Jens Kurreck (ed.) 

Cambridge, UK: RSC Publishing 2008 | 343pp | ?89.00 (HB) ISBN 9780854041169 

Provides a comprehensive overview of the development of oligonucleotides for therapeutic applications, touching on a number of different strategies with a special focus on the latest progress in the field of RNA interference. 

Pharmaceutical substances: Syntheses, patents and applications of the most relevant APIs

Axel Kleeman, J?rgen Engel, Bernhard Kutscher and Dietmar Reichert (eds.) 

Stuttgart, Germany: Thieme 2009 | 1722pp | ?570.00 (HB) ISBN 9783135584058 

This is a completely revised 5th edition of an encyclopaedic collection of information on about 1300 active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs). It is a standard work for those involved in the synthesis and manufacture of pharmaceuticals, together with a broad spectrum of R&D chemists, pharmacists etc. It is particularly useful as a source of information on pharmaceutical reaction schemes.  

The description of each compound includes: chemical structure; graphical representation of synthetic route including intermediates; nomenclature (INN standard, trivial names, synonyms, CAS number); ATC codes; medical applications/therapeutic category; toxicological data; patent number, origin, holder and expiry date; commercial information; and bibliographic information including CASSI codes. 

Version 3.1 of the electronic version of this compendium was released in October 2008, with 51 new APIs and updates to 16 syntheses. 

For further information see website