McGraw-Hill will become the exclusive publisher of Harvard Medical School books for consumers, publishing about 10 titles a year in hardcover and trade paperback, starting in 2004. The books, to be published under the McGraw-Hill imprint of the McGraw-Hill Professional group, will cover a range of topics to help readers live healthier lifestyles.

The new line fits with M-H's existing program of publishing consumer books on health subjects. Though the new line will be designed for the trade market, the books will be written by members of the Harvard Medical School Faculty and reflect their research.

Philip Ruppel, v-p and group publisher of M-H Professional, said it's too soon to say which topics will be covered, although he mentioned common health issues such as diabetes, arthritis, back pain and dyslexia as examples of possible subjects. Asked whether the line will try to tap readers' hunger for weight-loss books, he replied, "Will they be the typical diet book? That is probably a bit of a stretch considering what Harvard Medical School is really doing."