Our look is the result of reader comments, our own experimentation, and feed-back from distribution channels. Distinctive covers complement our distinctive approach to technical topics, breathing personality and life into potentially dry subjects.
The animal on the cover of Developing Bioinformatics Computer Skills is Caenorhabditis elegans, a small nematode worm. Unlike many of its nastier para-sitic cousins, C. elegans lives in the soil where it feeds on microbes and bacteria. It grows to about 1 mm in length.
In spite of its status as a "primitive" organism, C. elegans shares with H. sapiens many essential biological characteristics. C. elegans begins life as a single cell that divides and grows to form a multicellular adult. It has a nervous system and a brain (more properly known as the circumpharyngeal ring) and a muscular system that supports locomotion. It exhibits behavior and is capable of rudimentary learning. Like humans, it comes in two sexes, but in C. elegans those sexes consist of a male and a self-fertilizing hermaphrodite. C. elegans is easily grown in large numbers in the laboratory, has a short (2-3 week) lifespan, and can be manipu-lated in sophisticated experiments. These characteristics make it an ideal organism for scientific research.
The C. elegans hermaphrodite has 959 cells, 300 of which are neurons, and 81 of which are muscle cells. The entire cell lineage has been traced through develop-ment. The adult has a number of sensory organs in the head region which respond to taste, smell, touch, and temperature. Although it has no eyes, it does react slightly to light. C. elegans has approximately 17,800 distinct genes, and its genome has been completely sequenced. Along with the fruit fly, the mouse, and the weed Arabidopsis, C. elegans has become one of the most studied model organisms in biology since Sydney Brenner first focused his attention on it decades ago.
Mary Anne Weeks Mayo was the production editor and copyeditor for Developing Bioinformatics Computer Skills. Rachel Wheeler proofread the book. Linley Dolby and Sheryl Avruch provided quality control. Gabe Weiss, Edie Shapiro, Matt Hutchinson, and Sada Preisch provided production assistance. Joe Wizda wrote the index.
Ellie Volckhausen designed the cover of this book, based on a series design by Edie Freedman. The cover image is an original illustration created by Lorrie LeJeune, based on a photograph supplied by Leon Avery at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. Emma Colby produced the cover layout with QuarkXPress 4.1 using Adobe's ITC Garamond font.
Melanie Wang designed the interior layout based on a series design by Nancy \ Priest. Cliff Dyer converted the files from MSWord to FrameMaker 5.5 using tools created by Mike Sierra. The text and heading fonts are ITC Garamond Light and Garamond Book; the code font is Constant Willison. The illustrations for this book were created by Robert Romano and Lucy Muellner using Macromedia Freehand 9 and Adobe Photoshop 6. This colophon was written by Lorrie LeJeune.
Whenever possible, our books use a durable and flexible lay-flat binding. If the page count exceeds this binding's limit, perfect binding is used.