Ask ‘Emperor of All Maladies’ Author Mukherjee Your Questions About Cancer

BY Lea Winerman  January 25, 2011 at 5:14 PM EST

In his new book “The Emperor of all Maladies: A Biography of Cancer,” oncologist Siddhartha Mukherjee delves into the history and future of the disease.

Rather than being a rare exception in our otherwise healthy lives, “quite possibly, cancer is our normalcy,” Mukherjee writes. “We are inherently destined to slouch towards a malignant end,” because the gene mutations that lead to cancer are an inevitable part of our genetic heritage.

Overcoming that genetic heritage, Mukherjee says, would be “a technological victory unlike any other we’ve ever accomplished as a species.”

Tuesday on the NewsHour, health correspondent Betty Ann Bowser talks to Mukherjee about his book and the patients whose questions inspired him to write it.

You can watch extended excerpts from the interview above, and see the full story on the NewsHour.

Mukherjee has also offered to answer viewer questions. You can post your questions in the comments section below or send them to health@newshour.org. Check back on the Rundown later this week for his answers.

Jan. 28, 2011 | Update: Thank you for your responses to the opportunity to ask Dr. Mukherjee your questions. We are no longer accepting new questions. His answers to some of your questions are posted here. If you had specific consultation requests about your condition, please visit New York Presbyterian Hospital, where he practices.