Following graduation from Amherst, a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship enabled me to test the depth of my interest in literary scholarship by beginning graduate studies at Harvard University.
As an undergraduate at Amherst College, I was devoted to Dickensian novels and antiestablishment journalism while marginally fulfilling premedical requirements.
In general, all cancers have been traditionally characterized by the way they appear under the microscope and the organs in which they arise.
Every cancer looks different. Every cancer has similarities to other cancers. And we're trying to milk those differences and similarities to do a better job of predicting how things are going to work out and making new drugs.
I believe that we are going to have a much deeper appreciation of what kinds of abnormalities in cancer cells and in the surrounding cells that feed and respond to cancers are vulnerabilities that will allow us to make better predictions of which kinds of drugs will work to treat these cancers.
I was born in the shadow of World War II, on December 18, 1939, on the South Shore of Long Island, a product of the early -wentieth-century emigration of Eastern European Jewry to New York City and its environs.
I had learned of Gertrude Stein's bon mot that medicine opened all doors. This prompted me, in different moods, to view my future life as literary psychiatrist, globe-trotting tropical disease specialist, or academic internist.
Tobacco, UV rays, viruses, heredity, and age are the main causes of cancer.
When high school students ask to spend their afternoons and weekends in my laboratory, I am amazed: I didn't develop that kind of enthusiasm for science until I was 28 years old.
In preparation for a career in academic medicine, I worked as a medical house officer at Columbia-Presbyterian Hospital from 1966 to 1968 and then joined Ira Pastan's laboratory at the National Institutes of Health as a Clinical Associate.
I keep encouraging the pharmaceutical companies to put more money into R&D.
The public schools I attended were dominated by athletics and rarely inspiring intellectually, but I enjoyed a small circle of interesting friends despite my ineptitude at team sports and my preference for reading.
The NCI scientific programme leaders meet regularly to ensure that we are not ignoring highly original proposals and that we are not creating an unbalanced grant portfolio.