Arch Virol (2009) 154:1577 DOI 10.1007/s00705-009-0446-1 BOOK REVIEW B. W. J. Mahy and M. H. V. Van Regenmortel (Editors-in-Chief): Encyclopedia of Virology Third Edition, 2008, Elsevier-Academic Press, 1485 USD (1190 €) Hans-Dieter Klenk Springer-Verlag 2009 If you are asked about allexivirus, marnavirus or Taura however, there is little overlap. For instance, there are three Syndrome virus and you do not know what to answer, entries on AIDS (disease manifestation, global epidemiol- consult the last edition of the Encyclopedia of Virology ogy, vaccine development), four entries on HIV (antiviral which is the largest reference source of virological infor- agents, molecular biology, origin, pathogenesis), and mation available to date. Whereas even the most compre- another three entries on SIV. Thus, each of these contri- hensive textbooks focus primarily on viruses of medical butions illuminates the same subject from a different point importance and interest, the Encyclopedia includes animal, of view and with the eyes of a different viewer. In spite of insect, plant, and bacterial viruses with equal emphasis. the large number of authors all chapters are surprisingly There are more than 400 articles addressing general topics homogeneous in format and style. This is an impressive as well as speciﬁc viruses and virus families. Each entry editorial accomplishment. The text is complemented by describing a particular virus contains the most recent tax- very informative illustrations, and each article has a Fur- onomic information as provided by the 8th Report of the ther Reading section at the end containing a list of reviews International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses. General on the particular subject. It may be deplored that references aspects are illustrated by articles on subjects ranging from to original publications are missing, but as a concession to the evolution and phylogeny of viruses and the history of space limitations this was probably inevitable. With the virology to innate and adaptive immunity, to disease sur- huge amount of information presented, it is essential for the veillance, virus vectors in gene therapy and antivirals. reader to easily ﬁnd access to what he is looking for. Many chapters emphasize the economic importance of A cross-reference section at the end of each article directs virus infections of major crops and other plants and new to other entries on related topics. Furthermore and most approaches to control these diseases. A large part of the importantly, the Encyclopedia has an index listing about presented information is new and has been derived from 25,000 items, more than any other comparable publication. the research of the last couple of years. This is reﬂected by The Encyclopedia is highly recommended as a rapid the increase in the size of the Encyclopedia which com- source of information and a teaching aid to all virologists prises now ﬁve volumes as compared to the three volumes and to scientists working in related ﬁelds. It should be of the ﬁrst and the second editions. present in every virus laboratory to make it also available More than 600 scientists have contributed to these 5 to graduate students and postdocs who otherwise might be volumes. It is therefore not surprising that sometimes deterred by the high prize from buying their own copy. several articles are devoted to one theme. In general, H.-D. Klenk (&) Institute of Virology, Marburg, Germany e-mail: email@example.com
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 1, 2009
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