"Let’s make America the country that cures cancer once and for all," declared President Obama in his final State of the Union Address, as he announced a national "moonshot" to fight the disease. Yet promising cures for at least 100,000 additional cancer patients per year already exist, note renowned oncologist Vincent DeVita and science journalist Elizabeth DeVita-Raeburn in The Death of Cancer, but we are not using them to their full potential.
Dr. DeVita has saved many lives by pioneering breakthrough anti-cancer treatments. He has also seen cancer patients languish, as bureaucratic turf wars slow the development of life-saving drugs. The Death of Cancer vividly chronicles, among others, how America’s Food and Drug Administration has handcuffed the practice of cancer medicine, needlessly limiting doctors’ ability to experiment with multiple medicines and molecular diagnostics. "DeVita reminds us … that this [FDA] gatekeeping can hinder progress" (Malcolm Gladwell). "[DeVita] is someone we should listen to" (New York Times).
Vincent DeVita, the Amy and Joseph Perella Professor of Medicine and Professor of Epidemiology at the Yale School of Medicine, is a former director of the National Cancer Institute and former physician-in-chief at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. He holds a B.S. from the College of William and Mary and an M.D. from the George Washington University School of Medicine.
Elizabeth DeVita-Raeburn, Dr. DeVita’s daughter, is an author and journalist focusing on science and health. She has published in, among others, the Washington Post and Harper’s Bazaar and holds an M.S. in public health from Columbia University.