This panel discussion on medical breakthroughs was recorded live at the 2006 New Yorker Festival in New York City.J. Michael Bishop won, with Harold E. Varmus, the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1989 for their work on retroviral oncogenes. He is the chancellor of the University of California, San Francisco, and the director of the university's G. W. Hooper Foundation, which studies human disease. His recent research has focused on the molecular basis of cancer.
Daniel Callahan co-founded the Hastings Center in 1969 and served as its president for 27 years. Currently, he directs the center's International Program. He is also a lecturer at Harvard Medical School and a fellow at Yale University's Institution for Social and Policy Studies.
Eric Kandel shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2000 for his research on the physiological and molecular basis of memory formation. He is a professor of physiology and cell biophysics, psychiatry, biochemistry, and molecular biophysics at Columbia University, and the director of the Kavli Institute for Brain Sciences. His book In Search of Memory was published in March 2006.
Eric Topol is a professor of medicine and genetics at Case Western Reserve University. Previously, he was the chairman of cardiovascular medicine at the Cleveland Clinic, whose cardiology program has been consistently ranked as one of the nation's best. His research focuses on the genomics of coronary disease. He is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies.
Atul Gawande is a practicing surgeon in Boston and an assistant professor at the Harvard School of Public Health and at Harvard Medical School. He is also a staff writer at The New Yorker and the author of Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science, parts of which first appeared in the magazine.
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