CRUCIAL TEST OF THE NATURE OF CANCER 237
The true author of the theory of “ embryonic rests” as the source of turnouts, malignant and benign, was the embryologist Remak.* Later on his views were adopted by the pathologist Cohnheim, and to-day the theory is invariably, but erroneously, attributed to the latter, under the name of “Cohnheim’s theory.” Following in his footsteps, some researchers at times regard cancer-cells as “embryonic” in nature, and, along with many pathologists, they urge the origin of cancer-cells from cells of this, that, or the other organ, skin, mammary gland, liver, etc., thereby implying, if not stating, their somatic nature. Well and good. If cancer-cells be “embryonic” or somatic in nature—if they be skin-cells, or liver-cells, or breast-cells,** etc.—then it follows that their albumins must be of the same nature as those of the normal somatic or embryonic cells from which presumably they arose. This I deny point-blank, and, as the scientific man is bound to do, I will shortly give some of the reasons. In passing, be it remarked, nothing
(cont. from p. 236) is exactly what the enzyme treatment of cancer or malignant disease professes to do, neither more nor less. If words have meaning, “natural healing” signifies Nature’s method, which is all the scientific investigator is concerned with. The mere denial of this, or the use of inert trypsin to test its truth, is not scientific evidence.
* Remak, Robert: “Em Beitrag zur Entwickelungsgeschichte der krebshaften Geschwülste,” in Deutsche Klinik, 1854, vol. vi., p 170.
** My old opponent, Mr. W. Roger Williams, F.R.C.S., is one of these. In the Medical Record of February 9, 1907 (p. 237), lie implied that the cells of a malignant tumour of the pancreas gland could secrete, not merely trypsin, but also amylopsin and lipase. On which I suggested that in a universe in which this could happen it would not be surprising to learn “that some cancer-cells produce bile or excrete urea, or that in cancer of the breast the tumour-cells, true to their (supposed) origin from mammary-cells—the mythical ‘tumour germs’ of my opponent—actually go the length of secreting—milk !”