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Washington: A documentary based on Pulitzer Prize winner and Indian American doctor Siddhartha Mukherjee’s book on cancer has been nominated for an Emmy Award that recognizes excellence in the television industry.


picture from- mashable.com


picture from- mashable.com

Produced and co-written by US filmmaker Ken Burns, the documentary titled “Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies” is a six-hour series for American TV channel PBS and is based on Mukherjee’s book “The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer”, Emmy’s official website stated.

The documentary tells the complete story of cancer, from its first description in an ancient Egyptian scroll to the gleaming laboratories of modern research institutions.

It interweaves a sweeping historical narrative; with intimate stories about contemporary patients; and an investigation into the latest scientific breakthroughs that may have brought us, at long last, to the brink of lasting cures, the Emmy website further read.

In 2010, Simon & Schuster published Mukherjee’s book, detailing the evolution of diagnosis and treatment of human cancers from ancient times.

The Oprah magazine listed it in among “Top 10 Books of 2010”. The book was also listed in “The 10 Best Books of 2010” by The New York Times and the “Top 10 Nonfiction Books” by Time.

In 2011, the book was nominated as a “National Book Critics’ Circle Award” finalist. In the same year, it won the annual Pulitzer Prize in the “General Non-fiction” category.

The Pulitzer citation called it “an elegant inquiry, at once clinical and personal, into the long history of an insidious disease that, despite treatment breakthroughs, still bedevils medical science”.

Mukherjee is currently working as an assistant professor of medicine at Columbia University and staff physician at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City.

He has been the Plummer Visiting Professor at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, the Joseph Garland lecturer at the Massachusetts Medical Society and an honorary visiting professor at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.

The New York-based oncologist was recently felicitated with the Padma Shri – the Indian government’s fourth highest civilian award.

(IANS)


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Milky Way galaxy as seen from Chitkul Valley

NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has for the first time spotted signs of a planet transiting a star outside of the Milky Way galaxy, opening up a new avenue to search for exoplanets at greater distances than ever before.

The possible exoplanet -- or planets outside of our Solar System -- candidate is located in the spiral galaxy Messier 51 (M51), also called the Whirlpool Galaxy because of its distinctive profile, NASA said in a statement.

Astronomers have, so far, found all other known exoplanets and exoplanet candidates in the Milky Way galaxy, almost all of them less than about 3,000 light-years from Earth.

An exoplanet in M51 would be about 28 million light-years away, meaning it would be thousands of times farther away than those in the Milky Way, NASA said.

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The exoplanet candidate was spotted in a binary system called M51-ULS-1, located in M51. This binary system contains a black hole or neutron star orbiting a companion star with a mass about 20 times that of the Sun. The X-ray transit they found using Chandra data lasted about three hours, during which the X-ray emission decreased to zero.

Based on this and other information, the team estimates the exoplanet candidate in M51-ULS-1 would be roughly the size of Saturn and orbit the neutron star or black hole at about twice the distance of Saturn from the Sun.

The team looked for X-ray transits in three galaxies beyond the Milky Way galaxy, using both Chandra and the European Space Agency's XMM-Newton. Their search covered 55 systems in M51, 64 systems in Messier 101 (the "Pinwheel" galaxy), and 119 systems in Messier 104 (the "Sombrero" galaxy).

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Named in honor of the late Indian-American Nobel laureate, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, the Chandra X-ray Observatory is the world's most powerful X-ray telescope. It has eight times greater resolution and is able to detect sources more than 20-times fainter than any previous X-ray telescope.

Known to the world as Chandra (which means "moon" or "luminous" in Sanskrit), Chandrasekhar was widely regarded as one of the foremost astrophysicists of the twentieth century. (IANS/JB)


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