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Increasing numbers of physicists, chemists, and mathematicians are moving into biology, reading literature across disciplines, and mastering novel biochemical concepts. To succeed in this transition, researchers must understand on a practical level what is experimentally feasible. The number of experimental techniques in biology is vast and often specific to particular subject areas; nonetheless, there are a few basic methods that provide a conceptual underpinning for broad application. Introduction to Experimental Biophysics is the ideal benchtop companion for physical scientists interested in getting their hands wet. Assuming familiarity with basic physics and the scientific method but no previous background in biology or chemistry, this book provides: A thorough description of modern experimental and analytical techniques used in biological and biophysical research Practical information and step-by-step guidance on instrumentation and experimental design Recipes for common solutions and media, lists of important reagents, and a glossary of biological terms used Developed for graduate students in biomedical engineering, physics, chemical engineering, chemistry, mathematics, and computer science, Introduction to Experimental Biophysics is an essential resource for scientists to overcoming conceptual and technical barriers to working in a biology wet lab.
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Jay L. Nadeau is an associate professor of biomedical engineering and physics at McGill University (2004–present). Her research interests include nanoparticles, fluorescence imaging, and development of instrumentation for the detection of life elsewhere in the solar system.
She has published over 50 papers on topics ranging from theoretical condensed matter physics to experimental neurobiology to the development of anticancer drugs and, in the process, has used almost every technique described in this book. Her work has been featured in New Scientist, Highlights in Chemical Biology, Radio Canada’s Les Années Lumière, Le Guide des Tendances, and in educational displays in schools and museums. Her research group features
chemists, microbiologists, roboticists, physicists, and physician-scientists, all learning from each other and hoping to speak each other’s language. A believer in bringing biology to physicists as well as physics to biologists, she has created two graduate-level courses: methods in molecular biology for physical scientists and mathematical cellular physiology. She also teaches pharmacology in the medical school and was one of the pioneers in the establishment of multiple mini-interviews for medical school admission.
She has an adjunct position with The Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine, and collaborators in industry and academia in the United States, Europe, Australia, and
Japan. She has given several dozen invited talks at meetings of the American Chemical Society, American Geophysical Union, the International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE), the Committee on Space Research, and many others. Before McGill, she was a member of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s Center for Life Detection, and previous to that a Burroughs-Wellcome postdoctoral scholar in the laboratory of Henry A. Lester at Caltech. She received her PhD in physics from the University of Minnesota in 1996.Review:
This book is essential reading for any physical scientist who is interested in performing biological research.
... an ambitious text aimed at educating new graduate students about the important and most common techniques used in a modern biological physics laboratory; it could also serve nicely as a reference manual for advanced graduate students of new or underused protocols. ... Overall, the many outstanding qualities should make it an essential part of the biophysicist’s collection.
―Jennifer L. Ross, Physics Today, August 2012
Very useful as a resource to get a basic understanding of methodology outside one's realm of expertise ... very readable.
―Gary F. Polking, Ph.D., Iowa State University
The book provides a comprehensive overview of diverse methods in biophysics. It will be a great resource for every working scientist in the physical sciences. It would also be a great supporting text to read as part of an introductory course in biophysical methods, particularly for graduate students and postdocs entering the field from other disciplines.
―Anthony J. Koleske, Yale University
This book provides a broad overview on the many interrelated disciplines shaping modern biophysical research. Its structure evolves from the basics of biochemistry through the principles of relevant analytical techniques to the chemistry of nanoparticles and surfaces. The many chapters appear to be rather exhaustive, clearly organized and beautifully illustrated. I believe that this book will be a useful tool to undergraduate and graduate students and a valuable reference for researchers in the field.
―Françisco M. Raymo, University of Miami
This book fills the need for a practical, hands-on guide for physical scientists who are moving into biological research.
―Daniel A. Beard, Medical College of Wisconsin
As scientists from more quantitative fields expand further into molecular and cellular biology, their labs need to acquire new biological methods for sample preparation and handling. These skills are not traditionally available to physicists and chemists. This book will be appropriate for any experimentalist in chemistry or physics who is moving into biological work. It will also be excellent reading material for undergraduate or graduate students who will be working in a biologically oriented lab, as well as for an advanced lab class in biophysics or bioengineering.
―Mark C. Williams, Northeastern University
This book will be very useful for training the growing number of researchers and students from physical sciences to become more familiar with techniques used in biology. The author has made a great effort to keep everything defined and simple.
―James A. Forrest, Department of Physics and Associate Dean of Research, Faculty of Science, University of Waterloo
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