I am afraid I overestimated my capacity to fulfill conflicting obligations when I recently agreed to come to the meeting you
are arranging on The Cancer Cell. I have long-standing plans that keep me in Europe for the two weeks prior to September
10th, and I must lecture (twice) to the medical students here on September 15th. Moreover, while I am away, Connie must get
both of our boys started in new schools. All things considered, it seems likely to be awfully wearing on me and my family
to stay away the extra four days necessary to make a useful contribution to your meeting and attend the festivities for Mary
Lasker. Needless to say, the meeting promises to be excellent, and I am not oblivious to my indebtedness to Mary Lasker.
But, I need to respond to other factors as well and will have to send my regrets on this occasion.
Having initially supposed I could manage it all, I submitted an abstract describing our recent work with avian bursal lymphomas
and mouse mammary tumors. I would like to propose that Roel Nusse, my collaborator in the work with mammary tumors, be asked
to speak in my place. (He now runs an independent laboratory in Amsterdam, and is, I know, able and willing to come to the
meeting; he is also very effective on the podium and will help prepare a manuscript). If you do not wish to accept a substitute,
I hope it is not too late to remove my abstract.
As you may know, we are moving forward on the revised paperback edition of RNA Tumor Viruses. The Appendix has been dramatically
expanded, thanks, mainly to the contribution made by Chuck Van Beveren at the Salk. (He might, incidentally, be someone you'd
want to consider for a five-year position at Cold Spring Harbor). I am hoping the supplementary text can all be sent to the
printers this fall--and am very pleased that we can reissue the book in the two volume format.
I have recently talked again with Jesse Summers about the possibility you and I had discussed of having a brief meeting on
hepatitis B-type viruses to precede the RNA Tumor Virus meeting. He will be calling you soon about this. I have also learned
from our grant officer at NIAID (Dr. Frank Tyeryar, 301-496-7051) that there is a reasonable possibility of financial support
from them for such a meeting.
Again, I feel badly about The Cancer Cell and the dinner, but I trust you will understand my dilemma.