Bionanotechnology: Lessons from Nature
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Discussions of the basic structural, nanotechnology, and system engineering principles, as well as an introductory overview of essential concepts and methods in biotechnology, will be included. Text is presented side-by-side with extensive use of high-quality illustrations prepared using cutting edge computer graphics techniques. Includes numerous examples, such applications in genetic engineering. Represents the only available introduction and overview of this interdisciplinary field, merging the physical and biological sciences. Concludes with the authors' expert assessment of the future promise of nanotechnology, from molecular "tinkertoys" to nanomedicine. David Goodsell is author of two trade books, Machinery of Life and Our Molecular Nature, and Arthur Olson is the world's leader in molecular graphics and nano-scale representation.


David S. Goodsell is an Associate Professor in the Department of Molecular Biology at the Scripps Research Institute, where he divides his time equally between research and science education. His research combines computer graphics and computational chemistry to study the basic mechanisms of protein structure and function. He is currently developing computational models of drug resistance in HIV, seeking new drugs that will be effective in the face of the rapid mutation of the virus. Science education is also a major focus of Goodsell’s work, with projects such as the "Molecule of the Month" at the Protein Data Bank ( and his illustrated books "The Machinery of Life," winner of the 1999 Vesalius Trust Frank Netter Award, and "Our Molecular Nature," which explores biological molecules and their diverse roles within living cells.


1. The Quest for Nanotechnology.

2. Bionanomachines in Action.

3. Biomolecular Design and Biotechnology.

4. Structural Principles of Bionanotechnology.

5. Functional Principles of Bionanotechnology.

6. Bionanotechnology Today.

7. The Future of Bionanotechnology.

Final Thoughts.





“…a stimulating volume…borrow it from your library…” (Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology, Vol. 80 (8), August 2005)

"…Goodsell's book is a good start." (Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine, May 2005) 

"David S. Goodsell's new book is a useful introduction to bionanotechnology…" (NanoToday, May 2005)

“This is a stimulating volume …borrow it from your library.”  (Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology, 2005; Vol. 80, 964-965)

“…concludes with chapters on applications, surveying some of the exciting bionanotechnology tools and techniques that are currently in development…” (CAB Abstracts, 2005)

"…will quickly bring intelligent readers up to speed on the most important aspects...I enthusiastically recommend this timely and well-written book on this important, emerging field." (The Quarterly Review of Biology, December 2004)

"…a wonderful introductory text for those who want to understand nanotechnology from a biological perspective…an outstanding work for the educated novice as well as for the seasoned nanotechnologist." (ASM News, October 2004)

"…this book appears to be one of the only overview texts available.” (E-STREAMS, September 2004)

" window into the nanoworld...highly readable...will not only educate students but also reach a wider audience..." (Chemistry World, August 2004)

"Goodsell's fresh perspective on nanotechnology and persuasive arguments about the future of bionanotechnology have certainly made me into a believer--Bionanotechnology is going to be big!" (Biotechnology Focus, July 2004)

"Bionanotechnology: Lessons from Nature is well written and informative.  That alone would make it a good read for chemists. But there's a bonus: The book is full of Goodsell's unique illustrations of biomolecules and cells." (C&EN, June 14, 2004)

"Written in the style of an excellent biochemistry textbook, Bionanotechnology points the reader to  general principles of the biological nanoworld, and thus provides readers with guidance on the design of their own devices and systems…. I can highly recommend this book. I enjoyed reading every single page" (Nature, July 2004)