Cancer (?) in Certain Protozoa

Maynard M. Metcalf
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The problem of cancer is of much scientific interest and of extreme medical importance. It seems undoubtedly worth while to follow up any clue to possible light. This paper discusses phenomena in certain Protozoa, but the discussion may well be introduced by reference to certain cytological phenomena in mammalian cancerous tissue and to Boveri's masterful interpretation of these phenomena in the light of his intimate and profound studies of related conditions in certain invertebrates.

von Hansemann has shown the association of enlarged cell size with the beginning of mammalian cancer. Trambusti (1897) and Bashford and Murray (1904, 1908) have shown that such enlarged cells arise by the fusion of adjacent cells and their nuclei uniting (a) directly (fig. 1) or (b) being drawn at time of mitosis into one spindle (fig. 2) or (c) by the division of chromosomes in a nucleus without division of the nucleus or of the cell body.

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