Sonnenschein, C., and Soto, A.M. Over a century of cancer research: Inconvenient truths and promising leads. PLoS Biol 18(4): e3000670, 2020.
Abstract: Despite over a century of intensive efforts, the great gains promised by the War on Cancer nearly 50 years ago have not materialized. Since 1999, we have analyzed the lack of progress in explaining and “curing” cancer by examining the merits of the premises that determine how cancer is understood and treated. Our ongoing critical analyses have aimed at clarifying the sources of misunderstandings at the root of the cancer puzzle while providing a plausible and comprehensive biomedical perspective as well as a new theory of carcino- genesis that is compatible with evolutionary theory. In this essay, we explain how this new theory, the tissue organization field theory (TOFT), can help chart a path to progress for can- cer researchers by explaining features of cancer that remain unexplainable from the perspective of the still hegemonic somatic mutation theory (SMT) and its variants. Of equal significance, the premises underlying the TOFT offer new perspectives on basic biological phenomena.