Book Reviews

1987 International Archives of Allergy and Immunology  
G. Möller(ed.) Population Dynamics of Lymphocytes Immunological Reviews, vol. 91 Munksgaard, Copenhagen 1986 233 pp.; SFr. 39.-In the masterfully written first chapter Freitas, Rocha, and Coutinho state that 'the immune system represents a set of renewing cell populations, which continuously produces and loses cells in a dy namic equilibrium'. Different compartments of lymphoid cells 'feed sequentially into each other' and maintain the steady state. These are the stem cells in the bone marrow,
more » ... he thymus, the pe ripheral pool of immunocompetent cells, and the antibody-pro ducing end cells, i.e., the plasma cells. Freitas et al. discuss the properties of each population and their kinetics in depth. In the fol lowing chapters different aspects of the problem are expertly dis cussed on the basis of experimental results by McLennan et al., Miyasaka and Trnka, Pink, Scollay et al., Stutman, Sprent, and Mor ris. This important volume provides invaluable information con cerning the diversity and adaptability of the immune system and is indispensable. Paul Kallós, Helsingborg Sudhir Gupta, Norman Talal Immunology of Rheumatic Diseases Plenum Publishers, New York 1985 XV+818 p.; US$89.50 ISBN 0-306-41987-4 The editors state in their preface that we 'stand on the threshold of a new era in molecular medicine and clinical science'. As a clinical rheumatologist I was hoping to capture the excitement of this development, but was soon distressed by problems posed to the reader. Abbreviations, although explained, unnecessarily complicate the text, which is, furthermore, often interrupted by rows of references. In addition, some of the chapters could have been condensed without loss of information, while others seem to be too brief. It is to be hoped that these shortcomings will be eliminated in the next edition. The book is divided into five sections. The first section deals with basic elements and mechanisms of the human immune response, such as immune response genes, lymphocyte subpopula-tions, autologous mixed lymphocyte reactions, interleukins, inter-ferons and natural killer cells. These chapters are hard to read for non-immunologists, they are, however, very informative, and thorough study of them is rewarding. This applies first and foremost to an elegant and helpful overview of the array of lymphocyte markers, which makes the perusal of many papers in the literature difficult. The second section concerns autoimmunity. Rheumatoid factors and their possible pathogenic importance are discussed in detail. The four following chapters deal with the role of autoantibod-ies in connective tissue diseases. After an overview of some of the new directions in this area, anti-DNA antibodies, neuron reactive antibodies and antiphospholipid antibodies are discussed. The importance of the two last-mentioned antibodies is
doi:10.1159/000234300 fatcat:lgrkni2nwnb2hpbqbwr636ogtm