A Biography of Cancer

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Although cancer was first documented thousands of years ago in ancient Egypt, it is a disease that has long lingered at the margins of medicine--noticed only when other diseases, like tuberculosis and smallpox, had been largely eradicated. Oncologist Dr. Siddhartha Mukherjee attempts to shine a light on this often misunderstoond and terrifying disease in his book, The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer. He recounts centuries of discoveries, setbacks, victories, and deaths and traces the history of the disease in patients from Persian Queen Atossa to his own leukemia patients in Boston.


Siddhartha Mukherjee

Comments [6]

Paul from NYC

Not one mention of vitamin D and its anti-cancer implications, now that a voluminous body of studies are piling up. I guess the cancer industry just can't give up its endless research, historical investigations, and scientific proselytizing. There's no money in vitamin D prescriptions (unless they're somehow planning that through any future Codex legislation)...

Jan. 05 2011 03:14 PM
JT from LI

With many billionaires pledging to give away part of their fortune, I've wondered how much of a donation would be required to cure cancer within 5-10 years.

Jan. 05 2011 12:34 PM
Ivana from Yorkville

Please ask Dr. Mukherjee if he has any opinions about the following:

1. Thermography for earliest detection.

2. The very successful work of Dr. Stanislas Burzynski and neoplastons in his Houston clinic for curing cancer.


Jan. 05 2011 12:25 PM
Henry from Manhattan

There's a notion that wild animals don't get cancer, that it's a disease of modern humanity and civilization, how true or false is this idea?

Jan. 05 2011 12:22 PM
David from West Hempstead

It seems to me that the prevalence of cancer in the United States might be sensitive to a number of top-down policy initiatives--more stringent regulation of chemicals with unknown carcinogenic effects, for example. Thoughts on this? I would think that driving down the overall number of people who get cancer might be a higher priority than a cure.

Jan. 05 2011 12:15 PM
Joe Adams from Bergen County, NJ

Am I the only patient diagnosed with mesothelioma who, to the best of my knowldedge, has had no exposure to asbestos? I have heard of non-smokers getting lung cancer .

Jan. 05 2011 08:53 AM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.

Get the WNYC Morning Brief in your inbox.
We'll send you our top 5 stories every day, plus breaking news and weather.