View Full Version : News Mummies Don't Get Cancer

10-16-2010, 09:12 AM
Hi, guys ... FAX here.

As many of you are aware, I hate cancer. I've said it before, but if cancer were a person, I would gladly spend my life in prison or go to the chair because I would kill it with my bare hands. Cancer is the destroyer of innocents. F*** cancer and the dark horse it rode in on.

Anyway, on account of these feelings and attitudes, I keep my eye out for research articles and stuff. The other day, I ran across this one and wanted to share it with you guys. It's fascinating information and provides a smidgen of hope ... particularly for younger people who are not already genetically predisposed ...

Cancer and Egyptian mummies: are tumors a 'man-made' illness?

We report today that cancer is a “man-made” disease, a suggestion based on studies of ancient Egyptian and South American mummies, who – researchers say – were almost cancer-free.

Now, I want to make it clear, we – and other papers – are not over-reporting this, at least in one sense. The press release from the University of Manchester is fairly unambiguous: “Scientists suggest that cancer is purely man-made“, says the headline. The press release is based on an opinion piece by rofessors Rosalie David and Michael R Zimmerman in Nature, entitled “Cancer: an old disease, a new disease or something in between?”, which says that the “rarity of malignancies in ancient physical remains might indicate that cancer was rare in antiquity, and so poses questions about the role of carcinogenic environmental factors in modern societies.”

One obvious difference between modern lifestyles and ancient ones, of course, is that modern ones go on for quite a lot longer. The life expectancy of a British person now is 79.9 years (according to the World Bank); the life expectancy of an ancient Egyptian was about 40, as far as we can tell. And cancer is overwhelmingly a disease of ageing: Cancer Research UK, in its excellent discussion of the University of Manchester claims, says that “three quarters of cases diagnosed in people aged 60 and over, and more than a third (36 per cent) of cases in people aged 75 and over. So it’s not surprising that cancer was a rare event in populations where people were unlikely to make it past 40.” (New Scientist also has a very calm and clear look at the issues here.)

The researchers say that they have accounted for this, saying that other diseases of ageing – atherosclerosis, Paget’s disease of bone, and osteoporosis are mentioned – do appear in ancient Egyptians, and that childhood tumours have become especially common. But, since almost all of the mummies and skeletons studied died before the age of 50, it is hard to place too much weight on their findings. The interesting question might be why osteoporosis and so on was common among the under-50s.

Be that as it may, there are one or two places when the researchers’ excitement at their findings have led them to make straightforwardly inaccurate statements. Prof Davids said: “There is nothing in the natural environment that can cause cancer.” Now that is, of course, not the case. Ultraviolet light from the sun can cause cancer; background radiation from the Earth can cause cancer; viruses and bacteria can cause cancer. Perfectly “natural” chemicals can cause cancer (natural does not equal good, people).

More here ...



Disclaimers: Sorry if repost.

10-16-2010, 09:39 AM
good read

10-16-2010, 09:58 AM
It would be nice to see some data. What did the researchers say the mummies died from? Where all organs accounted for? What are the ages of the mummified? What is size of the samples for different age groups.

Now I agree that modern life offers more agents that can bring about Cancer but most of those are result of "choice." Tobacco initially choice but then addictive. Obesity which has addictive and choice components. Work exposure in securing a modern existence in certain mining and manufactoring.

Dave Lane
10-16-2010, 10:00 AM
Interesting. But even more interesting is the fact that if you made it to adulthood (21) in ancient times, you were very likely to make to 70. The reason the average age is so low and modern average age is so high is infant mortality is so low now. If a one month old dies and some one dies at 80 the average life expectancy is 40. Actually several studies I saw said life expectancy - infant mortality and accident were only 2-3 years different then till now.

Dave Lane
10-16-2010, 10:03 AM
Rameses the II lived to be at least 91 with many believing he was 99.

10-16-2010, 10:11 AM
good read

It is interesting.

I have long wondered if cancer was not the "Wasting Disease" as they used to call it in olden times. But, perhaps not. It seems to be only logical that our food sources, our environment, and the poisonous water supplies are contributing factors.

However, the most interesting part is that the centers and universities investigating a possible "genetic connection" are the ones receiving the lion's share of research funds. I have a doctor friend at Vanderbilt who heads the Childrens' Cancer Research unit and he is, essentially, a grant-writer. He never has a problem getting his grants approved, either.

It's a mess, frankly. In fact, a study published last year by the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center in the journal CANCER (peer-reviewed), flatly concludes that conflicts of interest cause some researchers to report results that are biased in favor of Big Pharma companies.

Here's a quote by study author Reshma Jagsi, M.D., "Given the frequency we observed for conflicts of interest and the fact that conflicts were associated with study outcomes, I would suggest that merely disclosing conflicts is probably not enough. It's becoming increasingly clear that we need to look more at how we can disentangle cancer research from industry ties."

I've come to be convinced that some of the best research is road-blocked purely for financial reasons.

There's big money to be made in cancer "treatment" and very little money to be made in lifestyle modification or "cures". Heck, a single CT Scan can cost the patient thousands of dollars.