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Egstad, H. M. (ed.) / The Wisconsin alumni magazine
Volume 35, Number VII (April 1934)

Bardeen, C. R.
The significance of the Bowman bequest for cancer research at Wisconsin,   pp. 184-186


Page 186


Page 186                                                                
        The Wisconsin Alumni Magazine
in general surgery and the surgical specialties and upon      work close
cooperation of radiologist and pathologist is
the radiologist practically all the members of the medical    required. We
are at present well equipped for work along
staff have important responsibilities involving care of those  these lines
and with the cooperation mentioned productive
suffering from the disease. If treatment is unsuccessful the  experimental
scientific work has been carried on in spite
pathologist is called upon for aid in getting knowledge       of the increasingly
heavy clinical responsibilities.
that may be of help in care of other patients. Thus while       Cancer research
in its experimental biological aspects has
Wisconsin has no cancer institute the Wisconsin General       been carried
on for some years in the Department of Zool-
Hospital with an average of fifty or more beds devoted to     ogy with respect
to animals and has been begun in the De
the care of patients suffering from cancer, distributed among  partment of
Plant Pathology with respect to plants. This
its various services, plays an active part in the treatment   work has been
aided by generous gifts from public spirited
of cancer and in the study of problems which such treat-      individuals
willing to help meet running expenses and
ment scientifically carried out necessarily involves. Nearly  from funds
supplied by the Alumni Research Foundation.
2,000 patients suffering from cancer have been treated there  The International
Cancer Research Foundation of Phila-
since the hospital was opened in 1924. In order to carry      delphia has
recently made an appropriation to promote
out this work as efficiently as possible those members of     the study of
cancer in plants in the Department of Plant
the staff who have the major responsibilities for the care    Pathology here.-
of patients suffering from cancer hold frequent conferences     In the Department
of Zoology the chief fields of work on
to discuss the issues involved and promote progress in this   the cancer
problem  have related to transplantable cancer
field. One of the major subjects studied is the relative     in rats. For
this purpose a colony has been maintained at
value of radiation therapy as compared with surgery in the    considerable
care and expense for the last eight years and
treatment of various types of cancer and the most                  has offered
good material for experimental study. Con-
efficient combination of these methods of treatment.                  tributions
have been made to our knowledge of the
During the past half century surgical methods of                        
colloidal platinum and of other metallic substances
treatment of cancer have become highly de-                              
  on the growth of cancer, to knowledge of the
veloped and to a large extent standardized                              
       relations between the growth of cancer and
in the surgical centers of Europe and                       X           
       the activities of the glands of internal se-
America. Radiation therapy has been de-                                 
       cretion, to knowledge of defense reactions
veloping rapidly during the latter part of                              
       aainsto cancwergn mc     prgens hastbeen
this period in centers properly equipped                     g          
         _against cancer and much progress has been
thisuch periodkb in csyentlers prop equipped   M                        
      _  A_ ma         de in similar important fields of experi-
for such work but is as yet less adequately
developed.  Early diagnosis and     proper                              
       mental study. A cordial spirit of coopera-
combination of surgery and radiation therapy                            
       tion exists between those in charge of this
are the present most promising fields for ad-                           
     experimental work with animals and those
vancing the treatment of cancer. In these fields                        
   engaged in the clinical work of the medical
we are already making progress at Wisconsin.                            
 school at the University.
   The work at the University in aiding in the diagno-                  From
 this brief summary of the work already
sis of cancer is not confined to the walls of the institution.  being done
at the University in clinical and experi-
The director of the State Laboratory of Hygiene is chairman   mental research
relative to cancer it may be seen that
of a committee of the State Medical Society which has for     we already
have a good background for further develop-
its object the promotion of public and professional co-       ment in this
important field of work. We already have
operation in the early diagnosis of the disease in individuals  good hospital,
clinical, laboratory and library facilities for
afflicted. One of the services of the State Laboratory of     such work.
The cancer problem is so far reaching in its
Hygiene (the central laboratory of the State Board of           clinical,
social and biological aspects that a university
Health, situated at the University) is to provide facilities  background
is essential for conducting cancer research under
for the examination of tissues removed from tumors sus-      the best auspices.
The basal physical sciences of physics,
pected of being cancerous. Tissues of this kind are sent      chemistry and
biology, and the social sciences are called
in by surgeons or pathologists from    hospitals scattered    upon for cooperation
with the fundamental medical sciences
throughout the state and the diagnosis based on microscopic   and with the
various fields of clinical medicine in the
examinations are promptly returned. Nearly 1,900 speci-       solution of
various aspects of the problem. What is at
mens for tissue examination were sent to the laboratory       present needed
here more than anything else is provision
during 1933. This service is of value not only to surgeons    for trained
investigators with sufficient freedom from clini-
working in hospitals unable to afford the services of a full  cal and teaching
responsibilities to be able to devote the
time competent pathologist but also as an aid to confirma-   time required
to work out more thoroughly than is now
tion of diagnosis made by pathologists in hospitals thus      possible some
of the more important aspects of the subject.
provided. The great variety of cancerous tissues makes their  Doubtless if
provision of this kind can be made from the
diagnosis at times quite difficult or uncertain. The wide     income made
available by the bequest, it will also be
experience of a central laboratory is helpful in these diffi-  necessary
to make further provision for apparatus, supplies
culties. It also makes possible progress in tissue diagnosis.  and books
to facilitate the work. As I see the problem at
   Radiation therapy for its advancement requires experi-      present, however,
the greatest progress will be made if,
 mental study both in the fields of physics and of pathology.  so far as
possible, the fund is utilized to give opportunity
 Dosage has to be standardized so that therapy can be based    to investigators
of ability to devote time to research. I
 so far as possible on exact knowledge of the nature of the    think that
elaborate organization with a large overhead
 radiation used in treating a given patient. The effects of    should be
avoided and that productive research in fields of
 radiation of various types and length of time on normal and   greatest promise,
facilitated by the cooperative spirit which
 cancerous tissues have to be tested on animals as well as     has always
characterized the University of Wisconsin,
 patients both for advance of knowledge and to spare             should be
the aim. We may thus best accomplish the end
 patients needless experimentation. In this experimental       for which
this generous bequest was made.


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