Dr Otto Warburg, a German cell physiologist, biochemist, and Nobel Prize recipient, studied cancer for over 60 years. Prior to WWII his research was funded by Rockefeller (nearly DM2m, a substantial investment in its day). He concluded that the prime cause for cancer was toxins. In his time this would have been petrol fumes, smoking, pollution, pesticides and the like, not much different from today. Radiation and chemotherapy can be considered toxins as well. Warburg’s solution was prevention, that is by eliminating toxins and eating healthy foods full of essential minerals and vitamins. There is 60 years of his thorough and detailed documented evidence available now in your State Library.
While this may be true for some compounds, to make broad brush statements that all toxins cause cancer is not correct. This is not supported by science.
There are many compounds which are consumed each day which are considered ‘toxic’ either due to the compounds present or the response of the human body when consumed as elevated concentrations. Even water, which has been discussed in other threads, consumed at sufficient level is toxic to humans.
Eating a diet dominated by one food can lead to long term health consequences, including cancer (such as foods very low in fibre).
Another example is an excessive intake of isolated antioxidants can have toxic effects and may even promote rather than prevent oxidative damage — a phenomenon termed the “antioxidant paradox”. Antioxidants are promoted by the health food industry and can be linked, when consumed to excess, to multiple illnesses, including diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Foods rich in antioxidants fall into ‘eating healthy foods full of essential minerals and vitamins’.
That is quite a step from where I live. How about some evidence that is a little more accessible?
What is a toxin by Warburg’s definition? How do we identify them?
What is meant by healthy food? How do you know this?
But if you are plant eating dinosaur this does not necessarily hold true. Or does it?
Many of the diseases we think of as modern have been around for a long time. If only the Pharos of Egypt had CT or MRI machines and scanning electron microscopes.
With most cancers soft tissue related it should be no surprise there is limited historical evidence. The diagnostic tools and knowledge are recent inventions. Preserved soft tissue samples from other than the most recent century are virtually non existent. Science will continue to improve that knowledge.
In the modern world, as an example there is adequate evidence Skin cancer in particular is not caused by any toxins. It is a combination of genetic predisposition and exposure to sunlight.
The cancerous effects of smoking tobacco or exposure to asbestos are also well established.
There is no one single factor, treatment or cure for all cancers which makes generalisation unreliable. If it was that simple cancer would be a distant memory.
Research has moved on since then. The study of aging and why cells mutate has become an are of great interest.
I suggest you read Lifespan - Why we age & wy we don’t have to by David A Sinclair. The book was published in 2019 and while the book is primarily about aging it summarises the newer research into what makes cells stop replicating correctly, and why they may start going awry. Toxins can contribute, but are only a very small part of the answer.
Humans have evolved being exposed to natural radiation sources (across the wavelength spectrum) since the day dot…so I am unsure how all radiation is considered toxic…an an interesting fact is human bodies are mildly radioactive from the environment we live and food we eat.
Chemicals used in chemotherapy are often considered as ‘toxic’ but are managed through individualised dosing to treat cancer cells within a human body. There are risks of having chemotherapy, and likewise there are risks of abstaining from such treatments. Information used to make decisions what is best for any individual should be sought from medical professionals who know an individual’s circumstances and case history, and not the opinions on internet forums.
Well, you can do what I did and that is to have your library order the book from wherever it is available. I ended up spending $70.00 for the latest edition which has some added and updated notes from the publisher. All the information is evidence based. I am just a lay person doing the research and alerting others who may be interested.
Hello, it’s good that my post is generating interest. All the statements I have made is a deduction made by the eminently qualified Dr Otto Warburg. I am just alerting interested parties to the information that is out there if you are interested in following this through and make your own assessments of the info. Kind regards,
What book is that?
Does it tell us what a toxin is or what a healthy diet is?
Warburg was without doubt a great pioneer of biochemistry. Whether his ideas on the origins of cancer are well accepted today after some 80 years of further research, including many genetic investigation techniques that were not available then, is another matter.
There is no topic more subject to uninformed public discussion, reporting of various levels of accuracy, commercial manipulation and internet rumour than diet, health and wellbeing. The question is did Warburg really say these things and do they stand the test of time? Without knowing just who is reporting and what they are saying I cannot guess.
And much of his research is over 70+ years old.
While he was a Nobel laureate for his work prior to the 1930s, science in relation to chemicals and diets has moved on significantly since this time. I personally would rely of current contemporary scientific research by trained and qualified medical practitioners than that which is in the early part of last century.
Some of his hypothesis in relation to cancer at the time were novel, and have later also proven to not be correct due to comtemporary research. An example is Dr. Otto Warburg, suggested that cancer cells “live in hypoxic, very low oxygen, and acidic conditions and derive energy from sugars by fermenting them the way yeast does.From this, he theorised that these low-oxygen and highly-acidic conditions caused cancer.’ Such hypotheses, which later have proven not to be correct in the human body (as a significant proportion of the human body, including blood, is alkaline. Dr Warburg’s outdated hypotheses are often used by those who promote acid – alkaline balance diets.
I am pleased you have some knowledge and are prepared to discuss this topic. I am simply after the truth, I have no other agenda or vested interest. Too many people are ready to dismiss things out of hand without investigation. It has been said that disbelief, assumption and ridicule are not part of the scientific method and I agree with that.
You are correct in saying that Warburg initially wrote that lack of oxygen was the cause of cancer, his quotation on this has been repeated many times. He later found that he was wrong, and his subsequent finding was that cancer cells’ energy comes from fermentation, a more primitive form of duplication. This is clearly stated in the notes added by the publisher of the book ‘Otto Warburg, Cell Physiologist, Biochemist and Eccentric’ to which I have referred. The publisher, Sam Sloan of Bronx New York, goes to great lengths to explain the misconception and tries to correct it.
I welcome a current expert having a look at his work and his notes and verify the veracity of his extensive notes. I cannot profess to be an expert, I have to rely on independent, unbiased research that is free of commercial vested interest. Hence I turn to Choice to generate discussion and hope to attract some such investigation.
Keep well and keep healthy.
Which is all good. However you may be the only person here who has access to the book that you mention. So until you give us some more detail there isn’t going to be very much discussion or investigation because we don’t know what it says. Perhaps you could explain it in your own words or find some reference on line that explains it that we can all read.
Suggest it may be a ‘Historical’ biography on Dr Otto Warburg by Dr Hans Krebs, (German born and educated and not the German WW2 General). Dymocks $103.79 for 180 pages in paperback only.
Warburg passed away in 1970
Krebs passed away in 1981
The book is of historical interest. As a biography it is not a recognised academic text. I’ve not sought peer reviews. Biographies of any notable scientists and inventors may be best appreciated with the knowledge of the time they lived in.
Reading the biographies of any number of contemporaries to Warburg or Krebs there are notable achievements, visions of the future and assumptions/guesses about science. The last mentioned might be more correctly described as incomplete/unfinished research. Often such assumptions turn out to be incorrect, explaining why such research remained incomplete. Modern scientists have better tools and greater knowledge to deliver their research.
In respect of cancer causes and treatment, we now have a more complete knowledge of cancer. Modern oncology understands what Warburg and Krebs were unable to find. Warburg’s work as a scientist into understanding several aspects of cell biology is only a small portion of what modern medical and biological science knows today. It was important at the time, and was recognised.
One current reference on Oncology and the basic science of cancers. Apologies it is not a biography and may not be an easy read. It may also be accessible through your local, state or University library as a digital online edition
Thank you for taking an interest in the topic. On page 5 in Hans Krebs’ book it states the following: “Warburg’s approach was guided by the conviction that all living matters obey the laws of physics and chemistry, a view now taken for granted but not generally accepted when he entered the field”. I should add that, from all accounts, the methods that Otto Warburg used in his tests and experiments, could stand up to the greatest scrutiny. I hope you get the opportunity to explore this area further. Kind regards,
You can imagine that, as a lay person, I am inundated with information from all kinds of different sources and it is difficult to find out what is truth and what is a vested interest espousing claims. I am merely interested in finding the truth, I am not protecting any view. It is correct that the book to which I refer is a kind of biography, and it simply lists and discusses the 46 discoveries that Otto Warburg made. I am given to understand that there is also a book which has now been translated from German into English, which contains all his scientific notes, steps, procedures and outcomes. When I attended my local library (I live in regional NSW), there were several books that I could have ordered from Sydney Library. I chose not to because the likelihood of me understanding the terminology etc. is not great, I believe it requires an expert in the field who understands these things and is willing to repeat the processes even in the interest of historical research. While the information is old, it may not necessarily have lost its value, I only need to point to Tesla’s idea of wireless power - a concept that was buried until recently, to illustrate this (view The Tesla Files, SBS On Demand).
I wish you well and please keep interested. Kind regards,
We are all in that position to some degree, there are few, if any, medical practitioners, oncologists or biochemists in our ranks. The truth is never going to be found by oblique references to books that we cannot access. I am puzzled as to what you thought you would achieve by raising the topic and then refusing to give any details, Perhaps we should just leave it as I don’t see any progress in several rounds of exchange.
I am happy to have put it out there and created a discussion. As mentioned, this book on Otto Warburg is one of several available at the library. I live in regional NSW and a copy was acquired by my local library from Sydney library via exchange. My understanding is the book that contains all of Warburg’s notes is also there. It certainly is available in the USA but I have found this one hard to obtain, and freight is prohibitive considering I won’t be able to understand it, it requires an expert and I am not one. Leave it for now if you like and hope for a breakthrough at a later date. Meanwhile, Bruce French, a Tasmanian scientist has just appeared on the ABC because he has listed over 31,000 foods and their nutritional properties, and certainly that is a good place to start for good health. His website is Food plants international, and his motivation is to prevent children in third world countries from starving to death before they reach school age. No doubt it will be available on ABC iview still.
Keep well and safe with this pandemic and I am happy to close this discussion. Thank you and kind regards
As requested I will close it. Thanks all for the contributions.