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Great American Bestsellers: The Books That Shaped America (Transcript)

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371 pages

Summary

Great American Bestsellers: The Books That Shaped America is the companion book to the audio/video series of the same name. It contains a full transcript of the series as well as the complete course guidebook which includes lecture notes, bibliography, and more.

About this series:

Few global challenges touch humanity with as much immediacy or ubiquity as cancer. Over the course of their lifetime, one in three
people in North America, Europe, and Australia will develop a malignancy, and in the United States alone, the direct and indirect costs of cancer amount to billions of dollars a year. The sad truth is that almost every family in the Western world will be affected by cancer at some point in their lives.

The good news is that the landscape of cancer treatment and prevention is a vastly different place than it was even a decade ago. Thanks to a relatively new focus on molecular medicine, scientists have been on a highly encouraging trajectory of discovery. And with each passing day, researchers are gaining a deeper understanding of the mechanisms involved, poising them on the brink of tremendous breakthroughs.

With the wealth of findings in this field, it is not surprising to read contradictory reports about causes and treatments. It can be difficult to separate fact from fiction, but if we arm ourselves with a scientific understanding of cancer, we'll not only have the tools to evaluate emerging news, we'll be in a much better position to prevent and grapple with the disease.

What Science Knows about Cancer reports from the front lines of the war on cancer with a clear and scientifically precise—yet thoroughly accessible—guide to how the disease develops, thrives, and can potentially be conquered. Taught by David Sadava, a laboratory researcher at the City of Hope Medical Center and an award-winning professor of biology at The Claremont Colleges, this fascinating 24-lecture course leaves no stone unturned in explaining the amazing ways cancer works to subvert the body's normal functioning, and how therapies can reverse these insidious processes.

Using a highly visual, step-by-step approach that takes you deep inside the cancer cell, Professor Sadava answers your questions about cancer and debunks myths with a level of specificity, scientific rigor, and candor that is rare to find.

With his expert guidance, you'll explore

why cancer rates have risen over the last century;
what agents and conditions cause cancer, from tobacco and radiation to diet and female reproductive status;
how DNA changes underlie the development of cancer;
the specific genes involved in making cells progress, divide, and spread;
the methods physicians employ when battling cancer; and
how behavior modification, drugs, vaccines, and compounds found in natural substances may help prevent cancer.

Cancer from a Scientist's Perspective

Professor Sadava presents cancer at the macro and microscopic levels as he lays bare the crisis it creates for both humanity and the human body. You'll venture inside cells to learn the conditions that lead them to become specialized or cancerous, and how the mechanisms that facilitate tumor growth are analogous to the gas pedal and brakes in your car.

Methodically organized and delivered, What Science Knows about Cancer uses a six-part framework to investigate the multistage model of cancer.

Part one begins with an overview of the challenge cancer presents for society and an examination of the history of cancer dating back over 3,000 years.
Part two delves into how scientists use epidemiology to identify environmental agents of cancer, and introduces how spontaneous changes in the expression and duplication of DNA can go awry.
Part three looks at tumors—from how they grow and metastasize to how they're diagnosed, staged, and graded by physicians.
Part four reveals recent discoveries about genes and inherited cancers, cancer-causing viruses, and the molecular biology of cancer.
Part five describes how the three maj

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