This text tells the story of cells as the unit of life in a colorful and student-friendly manner, taking an "essentials only" approach. By using the successful model of previously published Short Courses, this text succeeds in conveying the key points without overburdening readers with secondary information. The authors (all active researchers and educators) skillfully present concepts by illustrating them with clear diagrams and examples from current research. Special boxed sections focus on the importance of cell biology in medicine and industry today. This text is a completely revised, reorganized, and enhanced revision of From Genes to Cells.