Summary of The Emperor of All Maladies

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The Emperor of All Maladies book summary


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Columbia University staff physician Siddhartha Mukherjee took ten years to complete this Pulitzer Prize–winning history of the detection and treatment of cancer. His coverage begins in 2500 BC and ends in 2009. His medical credentials and understanding of his subject are hard-earned and reflect a life dedicated to conquering cancer. Mukherjee trusts readers to come along as he describes equally complex medical approaches and politics. Those who persevere will reap the rewards of a deeply compassionate, knowledgeable and comprehensive saga. getAbstract recommends Mukherjee’s heartfelt explanation of this confounding disease to all those who are involved in medicine including investors and scholars, and anyone concerned about cancer.

In this summary, you will learn

  • What major milestones mark the history of cancer,
  • How lung cancer became a societal priority and
  • Why society should emphasize cancer prevention.

About the Author

A staff physician at Columbia University Medical Center, Siddhartha Mukherjee is a former Rhodes Scholar and an assistant professor of medicine at Columbia University.



The Definition and Nature of Cancer
In 1838, two German biologists posited that cells were the basic building blocks of all life and that cells grew only from existing cells. They found that all tissue growth comes from creating more cells, called “hyperplasia,” or by growing cells larger...

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