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Siddhartha Mukherjee Wins Pulitzer

Marissa Murtaugh
Published: Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011

Siddhartha MukherjeeSiddhartha Mukherjee’s acclaimed book, The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer, has won the 2011 Pulitzer Prize in the general nonfiction category. Pulitzer award citation described The Emperor of All Maladies as “an elegant inquiry, at once clinical and personal, into the long history of an insidious disease that, despite treatment breakthroughs, still bedevils medical science.”

The announcement came last night from Columbia University, New York, where Mukherjee is an assistant professor of medicine and a staff physician at Columbia University Medical Center. A Rhodes Scholar, Mukherjee earned degrees from Stanford University, University of Oxford, and Harvard Medical School.

Oncology & Biotech News (OBTN) interviewed Mukherjee soon after his book was published in 2010. In the interview, Mukherjee told OBTN that he gave the book its title “because [the book] really treats cancer as if it were an entity, a personality.” He added that the reason he wrote the book was due to the need “to flesh out this incredible mysterious magisterial disease that has really taken over our lives in society.”

Mukherjee’s beautifully written biography of cancer explores the history of the disease through its setbacks and discoveries. From 550 BC when the Persian Queen Atossa cut off her malignant breast in an attempt to overcome the disease to present day treatment regimens of Mukherjee’s own patients, The Emperor of All Maladies portrays deeply personal accounts of cancer from the perspective of those who have battled the disease.

Read the full Interview with Siddhartha Mukherjee.

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