Biophysics : A Physiological Approach

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Specifically tailored to life science students, this textbook explains quantitative aspects of human biophysics with examples drawn from contemporary physiology, genetics and nanobiology. It outlines important physical ideas, equations and examples at the heart of contemporary physiology, along with the organization necessary to understand that knowledge. The wide range of biophysical topics covered include energetics, bond formation and dissociation, diffusion and directed transport, muscle and connective tissue physics, fluid flow, membrane structure, electrical properties and transport, pharmacokinetics and system dynamics and stability. Enabling students to understand the uses of quantitation in modern biology, equations are presented in the context of their application, rather than derivation. They are each directed toward the understanding of a biological principle, with a particular emphasis on human biology. Supplementary resources, including a range of test questions, are available at
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Product details

  • Electronic book text | 320 pages
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 162 b/w illus. 10 tables
  • 1139211064
  • 9781139211062

Table of contents

Dedication; Acknowledgements; Introduction; 1. The energy around us; 2. Molecular contacts; 3. Diffusion and directed transport; 4. Energy production; 5. Force and movement; 6. Load bearing; 7. Fluid and air flow; 8. Biophysical interfaces: surface tension and membrane structural properties; 9. Membrane electrical properties; 10. Agonist activation and analysis; 11. Stability, complexity and non-linear systems; Concluding remarks; Index.
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Review quote

'Students of life science in the broad sense tend to have either a mainly biological or physico-chemical approach to their subject, and it is indeed a large leap to acquire a good grasp of both aspects. This book offers rigorous but accessible explanations of basic mechanisms and also presents biomedical applications in a manner that heightens understanding of the biological context. The book presents the biophysical basis of an impressive number of physiological and biochemical mechanisms in a manner that is not found in traditional textbooks. It should certainly help to broaden the knowledge base of students and researchers in biomedicine and life science and thereby facilitate cross-disciplinary understanding and interaction.' Per Hellstrand, Lund University, Sweden '... very well written ... some biochemical examples are beautifully described ... Chapter 5 (on force and movement) is superbly written ... The chapter on pharmacokinetics is impressive ...' Jose L. Neira, Miguel Hernandez University of Elche 'This book represents a good discussion of well-known biochemical and biophysical principles, but from a physiological viewpoint that is both interesting and uncommon ... Highly recommended.' Choice 'The strength of the book lies in the decades of experience that the author can draw on to illustrate these processes and in knowing his students. Overall, this is a highly readable volume that discusses the physics in physiology in more depth than the typical physiology textbook and will expose concepts from bioengineering to a broader audience.' Markus A. Seeliger, The Quarterly Review of Biology
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About Patrick F. Dillon

Patrick F. Dillon is Professor in the Department of Physiology at Michigan State University. He has taught physiology for more than 30 years, ranging from high school to medical school level. He was awarded the Outstanding Faculty Award from Michigan State University in recognition of his teaching achievements.
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