Biomineralization, as understand in this volume, is the capacity of organisms to secrete mineral skeletons or shells, or otherwise to precipitate minerals. Biologists, chemists and geologists are involved in the interdisciplinary study of biomineralization. The present volume contains the proceedings of a conference held at Birmingham in 1985, sponsored by the Systematics Association. It concentrates on biomineralization by bacteria, cyanobacteria, algae, lichens and protozoans. The present work succeeds a volume with the accent on biomineralization and biological metal accumulation (Eds P. Westboek and E.W. de Jong, D. Reidel, Dordrecht, 1983). The editors endeavour to give an all-round picture of recent progress in the knowledge of the processes involved, the products and their functional significance. The contributors give a good representation of the international scene of biomineralization research. Among 41 authors, 14 are from the UK, 9 from The Netherlands, 5 from the FRG and four from the USA.