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Waging War on Cancer cover

Book Details:
  • 280 pages
  • Black & White
  • 6.0 x 9.0 inches
Available Formats:
  • Hardcover
  • Paperback
  • eBook (epub, mobi, pdf)
  • 978-1-4602-5976-4 Hardcover
  • 978-1-4602-5977-1 Paperback
  • 978-1-4602-5978-8 eBook

Cancer research, Anticancer drugs, university politics, organic chemistry, Politics, Natural products, Biological specimens

Waging War on Cancer
Dr. Pettit's Lifelong Quest to Find Cures by Robert S. Byars

Dr. G. Robert Pettit is a man who has dedicated his life to finding cures for cancer. A gifted organic chemist, his search has taken him all over the world, for it is his belief that the most promise lies in naturally occurring compounds which have evolved over billions of years as part of the profound diversity of life on this planet. His search has drawn him across deserts, into jungles, and below the surface of oceans across the planet. A prolific research scientist with over 800 peer reviewed articles and responsible for the discovery and development of numerous anticancer compounds in use today, Dr. Pettit is a man who has saved lives and made a very real difference. This is his story.

“In this book, Dr. Byars captures Bob Pettit’s generosity, humanity, inextinguishable energy, outstanding expertise, stubbornness, and fighting spirit.”

—Laurent Meijer, Ph.D., ManRos Therapeutics & C.N.R.S. (National Center for Scientific Research) France

“It is altogether fitting that [Dr. Pettit’s] tireless and highly productive lifelong pursuit of cancer cures be recognized in this well-crafted book by Dr. Robert S. Byars.”

—Gary S. Krahenbuhl, Ph.D., Former Dean and Senior Vice President, Arizona State University (retired)

“This engaging memoir sparkles with anecdotes about a scientist’s quest to find cures for cancer…Pettit is witty and honest…”


—ForeWord Clarion Reviews

“…Pettit's passion for defeating cancer shines through.”

—Kirkus Reviews

“Pettit is one of the great heroes in the chemistry of marine natural products out of which he created a battery of anti-cancer agents not equaled anywhere. His spectacular story must be known and here it is well-told.”

—Dr. Carl Djerassi

Robert S. Byars photo

Dr. Robert S. Byars received his PhD in political science from the University of Illinois in 1968. He first met Dr. Pettit in 1987. At the time, Dr. Byars was executive director of the Arizona Disease Control Research Commission, and it was his job to monitor progress on grants awarded by the Commission. As head and founder of the Cancer Research Institute at Arizona State University, Dr. Pettit was one of the Commission’s major multiyear contractors. Following a long career in public health and a twenty-five-year association and friendship with Dr. Pettit, he found himself in a unique position to produce this important biography. Though he has been writing his entire career, this is his first book.


Robert S. Byars
Michael R. Boyd
Contribution by
Dr. G. Robert Pettit

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