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Neuropathology of Dementing Disorders.

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    Neuropathology of Dementing Disorders. Edited by william r markesbery. (Pp 405, £125.00). Published by Edward Arnold, London, 1998. ISBN 0-340-59037-8.

    This is a really excellent book which is both comprehensive and amazingly up to date, with the inclusion of many references from as late as 1997.

    As a clinical neurologist and neuropsychologist with a longstanding interest in the dementias, I found it extremely valuable. The editor has done a very good job in posing a coherence, format, and style, which is often lacking from multicontributor textbooks.

    The title of the book is perhaps a little misleading in that the book includes, as well as traditional neuropathology, a very comprehensive overview of the molecular biology and genetics of the dementias. As would be expected, a considerable proportion of the book is dedicated to Alzheimer’s disease with chapters on both the clinical features, genetics, and the neuropathology. The frontotemporal dementias are also well covered and the book includes a chapter on the recent developments related to chromosome 17 linked dementias. There are also sections on progressive supranuclear palsy, Huntington’s disease, corticobasal degeneration, dementia with lewy bodies, and prion diseases and vascular dementia.

    The editor has managed to persuade many of the world’s experts to contribute. For instance, the chapter on prion diseases is by D’Almond and the recent Nobel laureate Prusiner, and the frontotemporal dementias are reviewed by Brun and Gustafson. Genetics of Alzheimer’s disease are dealt with by St George-Hyslop and the neuropathology of Alzheimer’s disease by Price and coworkers.

    The standard of illustrations is excellent and the style generally very readable. I shall certainly find it extremely useful as a work of reference and for teaching purposes. The editor is to be complimented on producing such a delightful work.

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