Peptides play a decisive role in many physiological processes, whether as neurotransmitters, hormones or antibiotics. The rapid developments in peptide research over the past few decades make it almost impossible for newcomers to gain an overview. This means an easily comprehensible yet concise introduction is vital.This unique work covers all the important aspects of this wide-ranging field in one handy volume. On the basis of the fundamental chemical and structural properties of peptides, this reference runs the gamut from analysis, the occurrence and biological importance of peptides, via chemical, biochemical and genetic methods of peptide synthesis, right up to peptide libraries, peptide design and their role in drug research. Yet this book offers much more than a mere overview of the latest level of research. An encyclopedic appendix with valuable data on more than 500 biological relevant peptides and proteins, a comprehensive register and details of further literature references make this the ideal reference for all questions regarding peptide research. For newcomers and specialists alike.