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Presidential Lecture: "Notes from the Edge of An Experiment (or Cancer’s Anxieties)"

Physician and writer Siddhartha Mukherjee will discuss how the future of medical therapies, including cancer therapeutics, might change or distort our understanding of ourselves. In this lecture, he will touch on Artificial Intelligence, personal genomics and personalized medicine, and focus on some novel aspects of cancertherapy.

Dr. Mukherjee's laboratory seeks to understand the biology of normal and malignant blood development, with a focus on understanding malignant and pre-malignant blood diseases such as Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) and Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML). He has had a long interest in the role of the bone microenvironment, and showed that alterations in the microenvironment can initiate MDS. The laboratory was also responsible for identifying skeletal stem cells (called Osteochondroreticular or OCR cells) and is currently studying how these stem cells can regenerate bone and cartilage after injury, and how they function during bone metastasis. Another interest involves studying mutations in RNA splicing factors, such as SF3B1 and SRSF2, that are found in MDS and AML.

A Rhodes Scholar, he graduated from Stanford University, University of Oxford, and Harvard Medical School. Dr. Mukherjee was awarded the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for general nonfiction for his book, The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer, which has been described as “an elegant inquiry, at once clinical and personal, into the long history of an insidious disease.” His latest book, The Gene: An Intimate History, is on many best seller lists, including “The New York Times Notable Books,” and is a Washington Post and Seattle Times “Best Book of the Year.” It lists as one of Bill Gates’ “5 Must-Reads for 2016.”

The Presidential Lectures in the Humanities and Arts bring the most distinguished scholars, artists, and critics of our time to the Stanford University campus for lectures, seminars, panel discussions, and a variety of related interactions with faculty, students, and the community at large. 




Wednesday, May 9, 2018. 07:00PM


Stanford University, David & Joan Traitel Building, Hauck Auditorium


Stanford Humanities Center, Cantor Arts Center



Free and open to the public. RSVP herePlease arrive early, as there is no reserved seating. Once the main lecture hall is full, guests will be directed to overflow seated in an adjacent hall to which the lecture will be simulcast.