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Ocular Immunology in Health and Disease

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    Ocular Immunology in Health and Disease. By Steven B Koevary. £32; Pp 224. Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann, 1999. ISBN 0750699000.

    A pocket sized book with a very large remit is hard to achieve. Presently, there are several books on the market covering this increasingly popular topic, all with different emphases and depth of given information. Over the past 20 years there have been considerable developments in general immunobiology as well as immune responses and immune regulation of the eye and its adnexa. This book is a good and brave attempt to introduce ophthalmologists to immune mechanisms during health and disease. It begins with an overview of innate and acquired immunity and is a standard introduction to basic fundamentals in immunology. However, as a result of brevity, the book fails to do justice to the mechanisms of T cell activation, expansion and recruitment, interaction of cytokines and chemokines, and the role of tolerance and regulatory cells—all massive topics in there own right. Nevertheless the book maintains a steady pace and is easy to read and digest. Although more detail of immune mechanisms follows in subsequent chapters, an overview of T cell regulation and apoptosis, for example, would have been more appropriate at the beginning. All subsequent chapters are good and succinct, covering ocular immune privilege and tissue immunology, autoimmunity, allergy, allograft rejection, and tumour immunology. I was surprised that there was no dedicated section on infection, but there again the book does succeed in being small, readable, and well referenced.

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