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BIO 103 — Understanding Cancer: From Biology and Epidemiology to Prevention and Therapy

Quarter: Fall
Day(s): Mondays
Course Format: On campus
Duration: 10 weeks
Date(s): Sep 26—Dec 12
Time: 7:00—8:50 pm
Drop Deadline: Oct 9
Unit(s): 2 Units
Tuition: $435
Status: Closed
Please Note: No class on October 10 and November 21
On campus
7:00—8:50 pm
Sep 26—Dec 12
10 weeks
Drop By
Oct 9
2 Units
Please Note: No class on October 10 and November 21
Cancer affects all of us, directly and indirectly: One in two men and one in three women in the United States will experience the disease in their lifetimes, and one in six will die from it. To understand this enormous public health challenge and what can be done about it, we will study both the fundamentals of cancer biology and the historical and social science context of the disease. We will look at the epidemiology of cancer and its causes, investigate how these causes play into the genetics and molecular biology of cancer, and learn how tumors progress, metastasize, and evade the immune system. From this basis, we will examine the successes and limitations of current cancer therapeutics and diagnostics, and how historical, social, economic, and political conditions have influenced cancer incidence, treatment, and mortality. Last but not least, we will discuss whether and how the majority of cancer cases could be prevented. Current scientific and clinical research, as well as public database resources on cancer, will be introduced so that students can understand ongoing research and develop their own understanding of this serious disease and its prevention.

This course is intended for students with a basic understanding and knowledge of molecular and cellular biology, i.e., one year of college-level general biology or equivalent coursework.

Michael Bachmann, Research Associate, Department of Pediatrics, Stanford School of Medicine

Michael Bachmann has taught courses at Stanford on retrovirology and immunology, and at UC Berkeley Extension on cancer and HIV/AIDS. His current research focuses on the molecular and cellular interactions between cancer and the immune system in order to develop improved immunotherapies. He received an MD from J. Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany, and an ScD from Harvard.

Textbooks for this course:

(Required) Sandra Steingraber, Living Downstream: An Ecologist's Personal Investigation of Cancer and the Environment (ISBN 0306818698)
(Required) David Servan-Schreiber, Anticancer: A New Way of Life (ISBN 0670021644)
(Strongly Recommended) Robert A. Weinberg, Biology of Cancer, 2nd Edition (ISBN 978-0815342205)
(Recommended) Siddharta Mukherjee, The Emperor of Maladies, 1st edition (ISBN 1439170916)
(Recommended) Armstrong and Guy Dauncey, Cancer: 101 Solutions to a Preventable Epidemic (ISBN 0865715424)