This section is from the "Health and Survival in the 21st Century" book, by Ross Horne.
In brief, the transformation of normal cells into abnormal (cancer) cells is a predictable, biological event, obeying natural biological laws in circumstances that give the cells no other choice if they are to survive individually. In Chapter 3 it was explained how in conditions of constipation, normal aerobic bacteria in the colon are forced to change into anaerobic bacteria. In a similar fashion, when body cells are deprived of oxygen or the enzymes necessary to utilize oxygen they will endeavor to survive by anaerobic means, and to do this they must change in form, ie, de-differentiate, to a more primitive form.
Differentiation is the process that takes place in a developing embryo during pregnancy by which primitive, unspecialized embryo cells, as they multiply, change in form to the different specialized cells required to form the different organs of the baby's body. At conception, when egg and sperm unite to form one cell which then subdivides and multiplies, the new cells--called embryonic cells--are all the same: they are primitive in form, largely anaerobic, and multiply rapidly without constraint. And although they are different to the mother's own body cells and therefore foreign to her body, because of what is known as "blocking factor" they are not challenged by her immune system.
When the embryo attaches to the mother's circulatory system and begins to receive nourishment and oxygen from the mother's blood, the embryonic cells become fully aerobic, ie dependent on oxygen. As the embryo continues to grow, the embryonic cells change in form: they become different from each other in order to construct the different organs of the new body, so that they are identifiable as bone cells, muscle cells, skin cells and so on. They are differentiated.
In understanding cancer, the points to remember are that embryo cells are initially primitive, undifferentiated, largely anaerobic and multiply without constraint, whereas fully differentiated, specialized cells in normal tissues are aerobic and their subdivision and growth is strictly constrained.
When bacteria, which are single primitive cell organisms, are deprived of oxygen they are capable of survival by reverting to the process of fermentation of nutrients in order to produce the energy they need. This process, called glycolysis, was the process used by primitive cells billions of years ago before oxygen became freely available in the sea and air, and is still part of the aerobic respiratory process employed by oxygen-using cells of living creatures today.
Glycolysis is an inefficient process which liberates only small amounts of energy from a given amount of blood sugar, leaving a residue of pyruvic acid which is converted to lactic acid and eliminated. Oxygen-using (aerobic) cells still retain glycolysis in the initial stages of their respiratory cycle but are immensely more efficient because they are capable of taking the pyruvic acid resultant from glycolysis and combining it with oxygen, which process not only liberates about fifteen times more energy but at the same time leaves only carbon dioxide and water as by-products, substances which are completely harmless and easily eliminated.
In order to survive by fermentation, aerobic bacteria must change into a more primitive form, and because fermentation is so inefficient, more fuel (blood sugar) must be consumed and a lot of acid produced. This process occurs in the mouth when the natural bacteria there are deprived of oxygen by food residues stuck between the teeth, and the acid so produced eats away the tooth enamel to make the cavities we call tooth decay. Similarly, aerobic bacteria normal in the colon (bowel) change into anaerobic bacteria when putrifying residues of protein and fat cause constipation and acids and other toxins are produced, many of which find their way into the bloodstream.
When lipotoxemia and acidic conditions of the blood result in deterioration of the lymph which sustains the tissue cells of the body, the cells may be deprived of oxygen or deprived of the enzymes they need to utilize oxygen. When this occurs the milieu interieur , polluted, is referred to as the cancer milieu.
Like bacteria (which are cells), the cells of the human body are similarly capable of reverting to a more primitive form when forced to by interference to their normal respiration, and the more their aerobic respiration is curtailed, the more primitive they must become in order to survive. Thus, for a normal fully differentiated cell, eg a lung cell, to change into a more primitive form it must de-differentiate, and in degrees lose its identity as a lung cell, and resemble more and more the primitive embryo cells from which the body originated. The degree of dedifferentiation is proportional to the degree the cell is dependent on fermentation to survive, and when the cell reaches a certain stage of primitiveness it forgets its allegiance to the body as a whole and starts to reproduce as primitive cells do, heedless of the body's normal constraints. This unrestrained growth of increasingly dedifferentiated cells is cancer, and the tumor at the site of origin is called the primary tumor.
The degree of de-differentiation determines the primitiveness of the cells and therefore their rate of growth, which means that the malignancy of the cancer is directly related to the degree of de-differentiation, fermentation and production of lactic acid. Thus the cancer growth proceeds in a vicious circle because the lactic acid and other waste products of the cancer cells worsen further the cancer milieu which started the process off in the first place. Moreover, because the cancer cells resemble embryonic cells in structure and function they are to some degree capable of producing the same blocking factor embryonic cells do, which inhibits the immune system from attacking them.