Immunopharmacology, 21 (1991) 69
Elsevier IMPHAR 00529
Immunopharmacology Reviews - Volume 1 John W. H a d d e n and A n d o r Szentivanyi
The field of immunopharmacology had originated more than three decades ago in the application of antibody-based techniques to assays of hormones and drugs in tissues and body fluids. More recently this field has been redefined to include a primary focus on the immune system as a target of xenobiotic action. Immunopharmacology now stands as the preclinical and clinical science of immune manipulation. As the definition of immunopharmacology is coming into focus in the journals of the field and in the many published conference proceedings, both the amount of data accumulated and the number of reports published are reaching plethoric dimensions. A comprehensive and concise treatise is probably indispensable to anyone active in this growing field, and 'Immunopharmaeology Reviews' by Hadden and Szentivanyi strives to fill this void. The volume opens with chapters by Hadden et al. on the characterization ofimmunotherapeutic agents. J.F. Williams discusses the pharmacokinetics of immunomodulators. C.W. Taylor and E.M. Hersh then review the current clinical status and future prospects ofimmunotherapy for cancer. In by far the longest chapter in the book (ll4pages, with a continuation planned for volume 2 of the series), Szentivanyi et al. discuss the pharmacology of microbial modulation in the induction and expression of immune reactivities. In the two final chapters, J.W. Hadden and R.G. Coffey discuss early biochemical events in the activation of T lymphocytes by mitogens (listing some 600 references), and J.H. Dean et al. review
toxicity to the immune system, including the effects of drugs and various environmental poilutants. In a multi-authored book, there are often differences among chapters with regard to style, timeliness and clarity. This book has a sufficient number of excellent chapters to warrant a recommendation to any individual with an interest in immunopharmacology. Many of the chapters contain hypotheses, thoughtful integrations, and tabulations of observations that will no doubt generate significant experiments in the future. The volume includes a subject index, and the table of contents outlines each chapter in detail. It is intended that future volumes in the series will encompass 'the full range of cellular and molecular components and the disease processes intrinsic to our definitions of immunopharmacology.' With its comprehensive format and current data, 'Immunopharmaeology Reviews' will provide a strong reference background for researchers, teachers, and students in the field. In summary, this is a thoroughly enjoyable and very useful work. As the editors say in their preface, 'we have intended these reviews to be the best by the best' - they make this point very convincingly. Plenum Press, New York. 1990. 418pp., $79.50. Prince K. Arora, Ph. D. Senior Scientist Laboratory of Neuroscience, NIDDK National Institutes of Health Bethesda, MD 20892, U.S.A.