Understanding DNA

3rd Edition

The Molecule and How it Works

Print ISBN: 9780121550899
eBook ISBN: 9780080474663
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 13th March 2004
Page Count: 352
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The functional properties of any molecule are directly related to, and affected by, its structure. This is especially true for DNA, the molecular that carries the code for all life on earth.

The third edition of Understanding DNA has been entirely revised and updated, and expanded to cover new advances in our understanding. It explains, step by step, how DNA forms specific structures, the nature of these structures and how they fundamentally affect the biological processes of transcription and replication.

Written in a clear, concise and lively fashion, Understanding DNA is essential reading for all molecular biology, biochemistry and genetics students, to newcomers to the field from other areas such as chemistry or physics, and even for seasoned researchers, who really want to understand DNA.

Key Features

  • Describes the basic units of DNA and how these form the double helix, and the various types of DNA double helix
  • Outlines the methods used to study DNA structure
  • Contains over 130 illustrations, some in full color, as well as exercises and further readings to stimulate student comprehension


Advanced undergraduate and graduate students in molecular biology, biochemistry, and biophysics. Also of interest to researchers in related areas seeking a background to molecular biology.

Table of Contents

An Introduction to Molecular Biology for Non-Scientists Why a Helix? Different Kinds of Double Helix Twisting and Curving Curving in Three Dimensions DNA Supercoiling The Assembly of DNA intor Chromosomes Specific DNA-Protein Interactions Methods Used to Study the Structure of DNA DNA in Disease, Diagnostics and Medicine Cytosine Methylation and DNA Epigenetics Appendix 1: Notes on the Derivation of Some Technical Terms Appendix 2: The Chemical Theory of Base-stacking Interactions in DNA Appendix 3: How to modify Gene Expression by means of Anti-sense Oligonucleotides, Ribozymes or si-RNA


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© Academic Press 2004
Academic Press
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Praise for previous editions: "Stylish...beautifully crafted, with a logical step-by-step approach to the subject. A book from which the advanced undergraduate will benefit and which will also generate a refreshing perspective for experts" -NATURE "Understanding DNA is a great book that will surely prove to be a valuable teaching tool." -THE BIOCHEMIST "A systematic and comprehensive analysis of the structure of DNA from a wonderfully fresh perspective." -TRENDS IN GENETICS