This second edition differs from the first (reviewed in J. A. M. A.148:686 [Feb. 23] 1952) by the addition of nearly 100 figures and three chapters ("The Sensory Response," "Excitability of Cardiac Muscle," and "Electrical Activity in Smooth Muscle"). The pace of research in general physiology has been such that the author was obliged to consult nearly 2,500 additional original papers, reviews, and monographs; consequently, although the type is now smaller, the text has been increased by about 200 pages.
The purpose of the book is to study "those aspects of living material that show some immediate prospect of being described in terms of the known laws of physics and chemistry." The six major divisions are devoted to the structural basis of living matter, the transformations of energy in living systems, the transport of water and solutes, the characteristics of excitable tissue, the mechanism of contraction of muscle,