posted November 15, 2005

New Edition Published of Biochemistry Textbook

The Higher Education Division of John Wiley & Sons has announced the publication of the third edition of "Concepts in Biochemistry" authored by Dr. Rodney Boyer, who is the Drs. Edward and Elizabeth Hofma Professor Emeritus of Chemistry at Hope College.

The book, published in October, is written for students who need a one-semester introduction to the fundamental principles of biochemistry. The intended audiences includes those preparing for a career in allied health sciences (pharmacy, nutrition, exercise physiology, nursing), the biological sciences (microbiology, physiology, agriculture), and the environmental sciences (ecology, bioengineering, geology). The Marketing Department at Wiley describes the book as "the most accessible, concise, and applied biochemistry textbook in the one-semester market."

The book contains several features that help students learn biochemistry. For example, each of the 20 chapters contains a thematic box called "Biochemistry in the Clinic" that focuses on human biochemistry and includes clinical case studies, new pharmaceuticals, and nutrition biochemistry. A dedicated Web site provides modules for the review of concepts from general and organic chemistry and articles written on "hot topics in biochemistry." "Just in Time Reviews" present descriptions of important topics including pH, thermodynamics, kinetics, oxidation-reduction, and organic functional groups.

Boyer served on the faculty at Hope for 26 years, teaching, conducting research and writing biochemistry. He was also chair of the department of chemistry for six years.

He earned his B.A. in chemistry and mathematics at Westmar College (Iowa) and his Ph.D. in physical organic chemistry at Colorado State University.

He joined the Hope faculty after three years as an NIH Postdoctoral Fellow with M. J. Coon in the Department of Biological Chemistry at the University of Michigan Medical School. While at Hope he directed the work of more than 75 undergraduate students in research supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), Dreyfus Foundation, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and the Petroleum Research Fund (ACS). With his students, he published numerous papers in the areas of iron storage in the protein ferritin and biochemical education. He spent a sabbatical year as an American Cancer Society Scholar in the lab of Nobel laureate Tom Cech at the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Boyer is also the author of the lab manual, "Modern Experimental Biochemistry" (third edition, 2000, Benjamin Cummings), and the new textbook, "Biochemistry Laboratory: Modern Theory and Techniques" (first edition, 2006, Benjamin Cummings). He is an associate editor for the international journal, "Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education." He is a member of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) and its Education and Professional Development Committee that recently designed the model undergraduate biochemistry degree recommended by the ASBMB.

Boyer retired from teaching and research at Hope in 2000 and resides in Bozeman, Mont., where he continues to write and consult in biochemical education.