Mammalian Radiation Lethality: A Disturbance in Cellular Kinetics

F. Lamont Jennings, MD
JAMA. 1966;196(8):743. doi:10.1001/jama.1966.03100210113044.
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This relatively small volume, one of the most scholarly and basic books to appear on radiation biology, is probably the most difficult of the recent radiation monographs. Nonetheless, the diligent and serious reader will find most rewarding the effort expended in understanding the concepts advanced by these authors. The subtitle, "A Disturbance in Cellular Kinetics," indicates the refreshing approach to radiation effects.

The monograph is divided into three parts. A brief introduction establishes the theme, namely, that most consequences of total-body radiation which leads to death of the animal are mediated through a disturbance in cellular kinetics. Then, after an all-too-brief bow towards the historical aspects of radiation biology, the authors launch into part 2. Here the casual reader will founder and the serious reader find his greatest reward. Biological homeostasis has been accepted since the writings of Claude Bernard, and most students will have little difficulty in applying these


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