- Series: Odyssey of a Biochemist
- Paperback: 352 pages
- Publisher: Harvard University Press (September 1, 1991)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0674307763
- ISBN-13: 978-0674307766
- Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.9 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,365,427 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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For the Love of Enzymes: The Odyssey of a Biochemist
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From Library Journal
Claiming he has never met a "dull enzyme," Kornberg has devoted his life to pursuing and purifying these critical protein molecules. Awarded the Nobel Prize (with Severo Ochoa) in 1959 for his work on DNA synthesis, Kornberg has also played a principal role in the establishment of Stanford's biochemistry department and has produced two major volumes on DNA synthesis and replication. This account traces a history of achievement in biochemistry by many dedicated individuals and makes a strong case for basic biochemical research. While Kornberg writes clearly and convincingly about his genuine and total fascination for enzymes, the descriptions of significant experiments will be intelligible only to students or professionals in the field. The book is most appropriate, therefore, for academic collections.
- Laurie Bartolini, Lincoln Lib., Springfield, Ill.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Kornberg is a gifted writer and the book contains sentences of both wisdom and beauty...For the Love of Enzymes is at the same time charming, stimulating and informative, a reflection of its author. If widely read--and I very much hope it is--it will greatly contribute to the scientific education of the public. (Efraim Racker Nature)
A well-written history of the field and Kornberg's role in it, full of explanations of the science itself and clear-eyed observations about the process of research. Readers will find here the first-rate mind of a first-rate scientist, and there is pleasure in that. It is rare to read such a lucid account of epoch-making science. (Lee Dembart Los Angeles Times)
Kornberg's book shines with a love of science...Let us hope that there are those like him today who will, in 50 years' time, be able to inform, instruct and amaze us with a book such as this. (Maxine Clarke New Scientist)
This is the life of a great scientist, told with modesty and wit. (Peter Gorner Chicago Tribune)
Kornberg's new book For the Love of Enzymes...traces the origins and development of his research on the biosynthesis of DNA, work that was to bring him a Nobel Prize in 1959. Although largely devoted to science, the book is written from a distinctly personal point of view, which adds greatly to its interest not only because of what we learn about Kornberg the man but also because of the light it sheds on how the personality of a researcher may be reflected in the style of his work...The fusion of biochemistry and genetics that has led to the dramatic emergence of molecular biology and genetic engineering in the past few decades is perhaps the most notable event in science in the later 20th century. For the Love of Enzymes offers a unique and fascinating insight into the life and thought of a man whose work was at the center of these grand developments. (Eugene Kennedy Science)
This is a first-rate book. I had difficulty in putting it down. Kornberg is refreshingly frank and writes with a lively wit as well. It has a wealth of important biochemical facts and history, which are brought to life with clarity and style. The book is a paradigm for how to convey factual information in a way that is easy to remember and to enjoy. (Paul Schimmel, Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
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Top Customer Reviews
However, I have always been intrigued by the mystery of when and how life is born (erupts) from inanimate matter and the hints were that enzymes played a key role in that evolutionary step. In my recent book searches I came across Arthur Kornberg's "For the Love of Enzymes" and bought it on the basis of the recommendations with the hope that it might shed some light on the process of the eruption of life.
I was captivated by the book and could not put it down until finished. It clearly defined what an enzyme was in chemical terms. It certainly confirmed to me that life would not exist were it not for enzymes. Although the explicit details of the step by step process of the evolution of first life still remains to be unveiled (to my present knowledge), there remains no doubt in my mind that enzymes are the vital "spark" which makes and keeps the "engine" of life going. This book has filled many gaps in my pseudo-layman's knowledge of life, biology, and health. In addition, it gives the insight into the form, creation and manipulation of DNA for which enzymes are essential, and the resultant techniques of genetic engineering. It also presents an inspiring account of the pursuit of science from one very prominent person's (Nobel recipient's) perspective. I highly recommend this book to any layman interested in the origin of life, biology, and health - and certainly any aspiring health practitioner or student in the health field or the broad field of biology, chemistry, and biochemistry. It was mind-expanding and mind-blowing to me! Enjoy!
It has some quite entertaining anecdotes, some social message, and a lot biology from the forefront of enzyme-research that should not be forgotten.
It also has a couple of verbatim repetitions withing the book, which are a bit odd.
On the other hand, it has managed to convince me of something that I have already suspected - that purifying and studying enzymes must be one of the most boring lines of research on the face of this planet. Kronberg makes a very valiant effort trying to show the opposite, and it's obvious that he loves his research with passion, something that I truly admire.
I recommend this book to anyone who is thinking of entering enzymology - I believe it will give them a reasonably realistic estimate on whether they will like the work or not (in my case the answer was no, but it's personal taste).