Lung Development: Biological and Clinical Perspectives: Biochemistry and Physiology, Volume I, provides a comprehensive and multidisciplinary treatise with regard to surfactant-related issues in lung maturation. Despite the deliberate emphasis on biochemistry in this volume, the aim is to place this information in the perspective of anatomy, physiology, and clinical perinatology. The book is organized into four parts. Part I offers a brief historical perspective by reviewing the chronology of clinical and basic advances. Part II then establishes a frame of scientific reference by reviewing the morphology and cytology of lung development and the physiology of pulmonary surfactant. Stages of development and variations in the maturation process are emphasized, while cautions to the biochemist are offered with respect to interpretation of experimental data. Part III provides an introduction to lung biochemistry. Part IV deals with the developmental biochemistry of lung phospholipid metabolism; the featured compound is the predominant surfactant component, phosphatidylcholine (PC). A focal point for discussion concerns regulatory mechanisms operating to control the production of saturated PC during late gestational development of the fetal lung.