Designed as an upper-level textbook and a reference forresearchers, this important book concentrates on central conceptsof the bacterial lifestyle. Taking a refreshingly new approach, itpresent an integrated view of the prokaryotic cell as an organismand as a member of an interacting population. Beginning with adescription of cellular structures, the text proceeds throughmetabolic pathways and metabolic reactions to the genes andregulatory mechanisms. At a higher level of complexity, adiscussion of cell differentiation processes is followed by adescription of the diversity of prokaryotes and their role in thebiosphere. A closing section deals with man and microbes (ie,applied microbiology). * * The first text to adopt an integrated view of the prokaryoticcell as an organism and as a member of a population. * Vividly illustrates the diversity of the prokaryotic world -nearly all the metabolic diversity in living organisms is found inmicrobes. * New developments in applied microbiology highlighted. * Extensive linking between related topics allows easy navigationthrough the book. * Essential definitions and conclusions highlighted. * Supplementary information in boxes.