So, I’m having a bit of a blogging holiday due to other things catching up with me at the moment but I hope to get a few posts out soon.
First, a few words on the ongoing MMS story.
He also received an award at TAM last weekend (I encourage you to read some of the fantastic blog-based commentaries on the proceedings if you’re interested in the concept and might attend next year, and also look up QEDcon!) in recognition of his skeptical activism achievements.
So, on to the meat.
‘Bugs’ and Cancer
I was saying to Rhys the other day: the most annoying out of all Humble’s false claims, for me, is that cancer is caused by ‘a bug inside the cancer cells’.
Some cancers can be initiated by viral infections; when parts of the viral genome are incorporated into our own, as is the case with certain types of virus, some disruption of the DNA sequences in that cell can occur. If that disruption is in a particularly important place – like in the middle of a gene that makes a protein important in preventing cancer from developing – then this could initiate pre-cancerous cellular behaviour. However, for the most part, cancer is not to do with ‘bugs’ but with the genetics, damages and behaviours of our cells.
You certainly don’t treat cancer using the rationale that there’s something living inside your cell that needs killing off. The only bug-like things in our cells are the mitochondria, which are absolutely essential for cell survival – you certainly don’t want to kill them!
Anyway, to continue. There is a blog by the Phaelosopher (whom we have affectionately dubbed failosopher) that I found a while ago. This guy attends Humble’s courses and writes about MMS quite a lot.
There is also a regular commenter (a spammer, shall we say) on Rhys’ blog by the supposed name of Maria who today reveals on failosopher’s blog both that Princess Diana is alive and MMS reverses greying hair! We suspect she either is Jim Humble or may somehow be in his pay; she’s very enthusiastic that we take her personal doctor’s records that we can phone up to scrutinise any time as proof of MMS’ efficacy.
The Fungal ‘Hypothesis’
So, to the point – I come across a comment referring to someone’s friend who analyses cancer patient blood samples, finding that they all have candida; a usually fairly harmless yeast that we all have as part of our natural flora, sometimes causing a bit of thrush if you’re healthy, but can be more serious if for example you are immunocompromised (see wiki for more there).
This person therefore concludes that candida always causes cancer and refers to this site on that very ‘hypothesis’.
I just watched some of the video featuring ‘Dr’ Tullio Simoncini below, but have to run and will finish it later – listen to it! It’s clearly just that freaky tactic of chopping up audio and stitching it together to say what you want, much like the clichéd old newspaper-cuttings ransom note.
The lumps are always white
As evidence for their claim that cancer is always white and therefore caused by this white fungus (yes, albicans is Latin for white), they show formaldehyde-fixed tissue. Well, that’d be because when you leave things in formaldehyde for ages, the pigment goes. Plus, tumour cells aren’t usually pigmented, no – except for melanoma, which is nice and black because of the melanin. Blood vessels colour them, but tumours come in a variety of hues. As a quick Google Images search or conversation with a surgeon (but not for the feint-hearted) will show.
The standard scary-theory dramatic music is in the background.
I can’t begin to describe the absurdity of this video. Standard correlation/causation mix-up, pathetic scaremongering. If you do watch it, don’t worry – if you’re feeling a bit itchy down there you can just take some clotrimazole and all will be well.
The latter part of the video, from around 8 minutes, is particularly worrying.
It suggests that metastasis is not cancer cells leaving the primary tumour (which it is and has been repeatedly demonstrated in the lab and in the clinic) but bits of fungus that are dislodged by ‘conventional surgery’ and chemotherapy exacerbates the development of distant metastatic tumours.
This is yet more damaging anti-medicine propaganda.
This Simoncini fellow is bad, bad news. And guess what he’s peddling as his cure-all?
Oh! Sodium Bicarbonate.
Via @rbhinkley – Simoncini was prosecuted back in 2006 (yay!). Google translate aids us with the original Italian text:
‘…date back to 2002, three deaths have prompted the prosecutor to accuse the oncologist Tullio Simoncini of manslaughter and aggravated fraud. The first death, February 8, Massimo Civetta, 34, killed by a tumor of the gut. On March 1, adenocarcinoma ended the life of Maria Grazia Canegrati, Milan, and on November 15, Grace Cicciari, Milazzo. The bicarbonate-based care has cost the medical radiation from the Order. [awaiting better translation of that last bit]
and from earlier in the article:
the oncologist, in exchange for 400 euro, tried the ‘miracle’ with a base injection of sodium bicarbonate, mixed with water, piercing the tumor mass. The effect was not as hoped: the following evening, February 8, 2002, the young man died with a perforated bowel, in excruciating pain.
And hopefully we’ll see far more miracle-peddling quacks who prey on gullible and desperate people go the same way.