A book by Indian-American cancer physician and researcher Dr Siddhartha Mukherjee has been longlisted for the prestigious 50,000 pound Baillie Gifford Prize for Non-Fiction in London. ‘The Song of the Cell: An Exploration of Medicine and the New Human’, which is among the 13-book longlist announced, highlights how cellular research has revolutionised medicine, enabling the treatment of life-altering diseases including Alzheimer’s and AIDS.
The judging panel described the 53-year-old Rhodes scholar’s work as his “most spectacular book yet”.
His other works include, ‘The Gene: An Intimate History’, which was a #1 New York Times bestseller, and ‘The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer’, which won the 2011 Pulitzer Prize in general nonfiction. An Associate Professor of medicine at Columbia University, Mukherjee graduated from Stanford University, University of Oxford, and Harvard Medical School. He has published articles in many journals, including Nature, The New England Journal of Medicine, Cell, The New York Times and The New Yorker.
Other important points
- Six finalists for the award will be announced on October 8 in a live event at England’s annual Cheltenham Literature Festival, and the winner will be revealed on November 16 at a ceremony at the Science Museum in London.
- Founded in 1999, the prize covers all English non-fiction in the areas of current affairs, history, politics, science, sport, travel, biography, autobiography and the arts.
- Last year’s winner was Katherine Rundell’s poet biography “Super-Infinite: The Transformations of John Donne”.