DNA Repair (Nucleic Acids and Molecular Biology)
This series examines new and exciting developments in molecular biology from the point of view what are arguably the most important players, the nucleic acids. Historically molecular biology developed as a series of interfaces, as geneticists met physicists, as structural chemists became interested in biology. This crossfertilisation is still a vital component of the subject, and this is reflected in these volumes where important new developments are reviewed from a perspective of structure and chemistry of nucleic acids. This goes to the heart of biology. For example, as the molecular genetics of development becomes clearer, we see that the process can be viewed as a control network resulting from a cascade of genes encoding DNA-binding proteins that go on to modulate further genes in the pathway. Thus in many respects this fundamental biological process comes down to the regulation of complex genetic systems by DNA-protein interactions.
In the first decade of the series we have witnessed unprecedented advances in many aspects of the molecular biology of nucleic acids. The area of RNA chemistry has exploded since the series began, with the huge interest in RNA-mediated catalysis. This subject has both intrinsic fascination and potential practical application in the development of new therapeutic agents. In the same period, the structural understanding of DNA-protein interactions has increased enormously. There is absolutely no question that this pace of progress will continue. Reviewing these subjects can be a little like trying to photograph an express train head-on, yet this shows the need for regular updating. The series provides an opportunity to take a wider view of subjects, and to draw some general conclusions. We look forward to the next period with eager anticipation.
DAVID M. J. LILLEY
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