Molecular Basis of Biological Degradative Processes contains the proceedings of the 1977 symposium held at the University of Connecticut Health Science Center. The papers focus on the molecular mechanisms underlying the biological degradation, including the relationship between the lysosome and tissue remodeling and the role of this organelle in processing intra- and extracellular material. The book also explores the specific application of the lysosome concept to the description of deficiency diseases of lipid catabolism. Organized into 12 chapters, this book begins with an overview of the mechanisms underlying cell death and its control, along with possible experimental models for its study, nutrient deficiencies during prenatal development, and congenital diseases resulting from zinc, magnesium, and manganese deficiencies. It explains the clinical lysosome deficiencies, the early phase of blood coagulation, cascade events in the activation and function of mast cells, activation of plasminogen and its involvement in the production of localized extracellular proteolysis, and proteolytic events in viral replication. Chapters on human neutrophil elastase and the protease-pathogenesis model of pulmonary emphysema; dissolution mechanism of apatite crystals during dental caries and bone resorption; and degradative processes of bone follow. This book is a valuable resource for biologists, physiologists, and those involved in basic and applied research in ""catabolic"" processes.