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Harper's Biochemistry 25th Edition

3.8 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0838536841
ISBN-10: 0838536840
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Originally published in 1939, this enduring reference/text continues with its mission to introduce biochemistry concepts to medical and health sciences students in concise text supported with graphs, charts, and diagrams. Updating the 2003 26th edition (which was drastically revised to make it shorter), the 27th includes substantial revisions as well as new coverage of bioinformatics and computational biology. Topics are each treated in about 10 pages and are presented under the themes of: structures and functions of proteins and enzymes; bioenergetics and the metabolism of carbohydrates and lipids; metabolism of proteins and amino acids; structure, function and replication of informational macromolecules; biochemistry of extracellular and intracellular communication; and special topics (e.g. nutrition, digestion and absorption, muscle and the cytoskeleton). The authors introduce each concept with discussion of its biomedical importance." (Sci-Tech Book News 2006-09-01) --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Back Cover

Currently the most up-to-date book on the market, Harper's Biochemistry, 25/e, gives you the biochemistry background you need to succeed in medical school. It contains the latest case studies, discussions of biochemical diseases, and clinical information. Concise but comprehensive, it is the perfect textbook for USMLE review. Features: covers the fundamentals of biochemistry in a relevant, interesting manner; contains information on prevalent medical conditions, including hypercholisterolemia, obesity, osteoporosis, and diabetes mellitus; covers new developments in metabolism and genetics, including the Human Genome Project and the genetic basis of hemochromatosis; presents hundreds of colorful images to help students visualize new information.
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Product Details

  • Series: Harper's Illustrated Biochemistry
  • Paperback: 927 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Publishing Co; 25th edition (August 28, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0838536840
  • ISBN-13: 978-0838536841
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 7.2 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,520,710 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
It seems that people like this book a lot or don't like it at all. I must admit, I don't like it very much. However, I think it depends a lot on: 1) your biochem background, and 2) your personal reading style. Someone mentioned to me that Harper's is like a graduate school text - full of detailed information and appropriate if your background in biochem is sound. However, most first year med students are not biochem majors and need a text that is easier to read (and enjoy). I bought Harper's 26th edition and also Lippincott's Illustrated Review (3rd ed.). They both cover similar topics (not necessarily in the same order), but they differ (significantly) in the way each presents the material. Different chapters in Harper's are written by various authors which creates a glaring inconsistency throughout the book. Many of the chapters are well written but some are just plain awful. The chapters that are poorly written make it difficult to nail down the main points. I often find important information embedded in the book's "essay-type" format. Illustrations are ok, but nothing to write home about. Biosynthetic pathways, for example, are squeezed onto one page with very small print. Sometimes these diagrams are so "busy" that it takes more effort than should be necessary to untangle the important concepts, and quite frankly, is simply uninteresting to look at.

Conversely, Lippincott has wonderfully full-coloured illustrations that are professionally drawn, easier to understand, get to the point, and are visually interesting. Besides the great illustrations, the text throughout Lippincott is consistent, clear, and concise.
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Format: Paperback
I think this book has been quite underrated by most reviewers. I think this probably happened because they expected this book to be a typical textbook on the subject. THIS IS NOT IT! This is not only a very concise and straight-to-the-point book but also a reference for extra-quick study because in the end of each chapter it as a quite complete and easy to read summary which allows you to check if you really understood the preceding pages. One other aspect that is important for me as a medical student is that this book also talks about the clinical correlations of a theme, allowing you to integrate the most important topics in your memory. One last advice: you can follow this book by itself but if you really want to have perfect knowledge on a subject get a book like Devlin's biochemistry to complete your study a lot more.
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Format: Paperback
While this book may not give quite the same level of detail found in some of the more massive and expensive intro to biochem texts, it is nevertheless a valuable reference. The fundamentals are all here, in an admirably clear and concise form. That makes going back to review much easier than with the fat books. In that way, this book fills an important gap in the field of available texts. If however one comes across a particularly difficult concept, the concise explanations may leave them wanting or needing more. In fairness though, I think a lot of the fatter books have the same drawback despite their longwindedness. Afterall, biochemistry can be pretty tough no matter what book you're looking at. If you are using the book as part of a class, then theoretically that is why there is an instructor, lectures and tutorial sessions. Admittedly, and to the student's detriment, the system doesn't always work out that way. I've found the book to be excellent for review because of its brevity and clarity. This book also gets high marks for attempting to point out the clinical relevance of the material, something that cannot be said for the majority of the big textbooks.
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Format: Paperback
We use the book as our biochemistry textbook. But it is very hard to read. I seldom can find satisfatory answer in this book, and sometimes even confused with the words. On the other hand, although the figure in the book is not enchanted, it is very clear. In summary, it may be a good book for someone who wants to review biochemistry, but not a good introductory book for students.
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Format: Paperback
The book, at least from my point of view, is not a good book to grasp the core concepts of Biochemistry from at the beginning of your biochemistry course.Actually,it is a tool by which you can get a deep understanding of the subject by the aid of other books that can give you the full picture of Biochemistry. Its advantage is in that it covers in details many of the topics that other books usually do not cover. I remember many times finding myself opening the book looking for some details that some professors mention as extra bits which are not found in the other textbooks and present in this book. I recommend it as a reference book for medical students but not a textbook.
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By A Customer on September 19, 1999
Format: Paperback
Isn't the book you need if you have trouble with biochemistry. I often tried to search for answers about general topics and couldn't get a single one. If you are a med student,better switch to Lehninger's Principles of Biochemistry.
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Format: Paperback
I am a medical school professor and am familiar with the different biochemistry textbooks. Harper's is a simplified text book that does not have the detail of depth of information one finds in the gold-standard texts of Lehninger or Stryer. There is a reason why these texts and not Harper's are much more commonly found in the undergraduate, graduate and medical school classrooms. Harper's is ok for the educated layperson or for the non-biologist who wants an overview of biochemistry.
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