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Dr. von Ardenne on Cancer, Inflammation and Oxygen

Published on February 26, 2014

Developed in the late 1960s by Professor von Ardenne, (a student of Dr. Otto Warburg, best known for his pioneering research on the connection between lack of oxygen and cancer), Oxygen Multistep Therapy combines oxygen therapy, drugs that facilitate intracellular oxygen turnover, and physical exercise adapted to individual performance levels. This unique therapy has diversified into more than 20 different treatment variants and is now practiced in several hundred settings throughout Europe. Ardenne put his finger on how inflammation interferes with oxygen transfer to cells.

“It is believed that cancer is caused by an accumulation of mutations in cells of the body,” says Dr. Carlo M. Croce, professor and chair of molecular virology, immunology and medical genetics. “Our study suggests that miR-155, which is associated with inflammation, increases the mutation rate and might be a key player in inflammation-induced cancers generally.” This and many other studies show how inflammation can help cause cancer. Chronic inflammation due to infection or to conditions such as chronic inflammatory bowel disease is associated with up to 25% of all cancers.

Manfred von Ardenne (20 January 1907 – 26 May 1997) was a German researcher, applied physicist and inventor. He holds approximately 600 patents in fields including electron microscopy, medical technology, nuclear technology, plasma physics, and radio and television technology.

Oxygen Multi-Step Therapy has become more commonly known as Exercise with Oxygen Therapy (EWOT). Although there are different ways to practice EWOT, the core of Dr. von Ardenne’s therapeutic practice is the breathing of pure oxygen while exercising. This allows additional oxygen to be absorbed by your red blood cell, blood plasma and tissue fluids.

Professor Ardenne wrote[1], “Because more than 80% of all cancer deaths are caused by metastases, development and evaluation of methods for fighting tumor dissemination should be major tasks of present cancer research. Formation of metastases is favoured by both reduced numbers of immune cells in the bloodstream and impaired oxygen transport into tissues. These closely related signs often emerge concomitantly when the organism is endangered by circulating tumor cells released from the original tumor by therapeutic manipulations. From knowledge of these facts the O2-multistep immune-stimulation technique has been developed as a way of diminishing the risk of tumor spread. The process combines temporary elevation of the number of circulating immune cells with continuous improvement of oxygen transport into tissues.

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When the oxygen saturation of blood falls, conditions then become ripe for the creation of cancer. Oxygen is exchanged and removed from the arterial blood as it passes through the capillary system. If arterial blood is deficient in oxygen or if blocked arteries restrict the blood flow, then tissues oxygenated by the latter stages of the capillary system may be so deprived of oxygen as to become cancerous.

People with various degenerative diseases are often found to have low venous oxygen saturation. Once they receive proper treatment, the venous oxygen saturation level rises and their health and vitality improve dramatically.

Arterial oxygen saturation should ideally be very high. “High O2 tensions were lethal to cancer tissue, 95% being very toxic, whereas in general, normal tissue were not harmed by high oxygen tensions. Indeed, some tissues were found to require high O2 tensions”, J. B. Kizer quoted in “O2Xygen Therapies: A New Way of Approaching Disease” by McCabe, page 82.

He discovered a "switch mechanism" of blood microcirculation, which depends on the oxygen state of the body. A high value of pO2 (greater than or equal to 50 mm of Hg) at the venous ends of the capillaries, attainable by the procedures of the Oxygen Multistep Therapy and by powerful physical exercise as well, results in an increase of the blood microcirculation and, consequently, in a permanent elevation of the oxygen influx and uptake, respectively.

Anti-Inflammatory Oxygen Therapy increases the blood microcirculation and consequently we see a permanent elevation of the oxygen influx and uptake.

If the oxygen state gets worse and declines below a certain threshold, e.g. in progressing age or after long-term distress, the cross sections of the capillaries shrink by swelling of the endothelial cells, and the blood microcirculation will be diminished for an extended period. Reversing this degradation is quite a medical feat. 

The utilization of the above-mentioned switch mechanism for permanent improvement of the oxygen flux into all the tissues of the organism is of decisive importance for fighting against the common cause of many diseases, disorders and complaints often going along with increasing age due to an insufficient oxygen (energy) supply for general metabolism.

Diagram of blood vessel structures.

On Professor von Ardenne’s site they say that, “This switching mechanism is interpreted as a re-enlargement of the capillary narrowed by oxygen deficiency (old age, disease, distress). The re-enlargement appears after increased oxygen uptake of the blood and improved oxygen utilization of human tissue over a certain time period.”

Resolved inflammation restores the blood supply to tissue – and allows the tissue to return to normal aerobic metabolism. Professor Ardenne showed that stress triggers persistent inflammation,which locks an escalating percentage of the body, and muscles into anaerobic metabolism – especially with advancing age.[2]

Anti-Inflammatory Oxygen Therapy specifically targets capillary inflammation with bursts of plasma dissolved oxygen at five times the level that were possible under the original design of Dr. von Ardenne.

Prof. Dr. Manfred von Ardenne

Special Note: Dr. von Ardenne used magnesium for many reasons. When one looks at magnesium’s anti-inflammatory effect as well as its ability to increase oxygen carrying capacity we see why Ardenne was so insistent on magnesium. I became famous in the world of medicine after writing my Transdermal Magnesium Therapy book and I still use magnesium oil on a daily basis.

Most do not take magnesium seriously when confronting cancer and other serious diseases. Researchers from Japan’s National Cancer Center in Tokyo have found that an increased intake of magnesium reduces a man’s risk of colon cancer by over 50 percent. Men with the highest average intakes of magnesium (at least 327 mg/d) were associated with a 52 percent lower risk of colon cancer, compared to men who consumed the lowest average intakes. Published in the Journal of Nutrition,[3] the research studied 87,117 people with an average age of 57 and followed them for about eight years. Dietary intakes were assessed using a food frequency questionnaire. Average intakes of magnesium for men and women were 284 and 279 milligrams per day.

Magnesium stabilizes ATP[4] allowing DNA and RNA transcriptions and repairs.[5]
Magnesium repletion produces rapid disappearance of the periosteal tumors.

Magnesium deficiency is carcinogenic, and in the case of solid tumors, a high level of supplemented magnesium inhibits carcinogenesis.[7] Both carcinogenesis and magnesium deficiency increase the plasma membrane permeability and fluidity.[8]

It has been suggested that magnesium deficiency may trigger carcinogenesis by increasing membrane permeability.[9] The membranes of magnesium-deficient cells seem to have a smoother surface than normal and decreased membrane viscosity, analogous to changes in human leukemia cells.[10],[11] There is drastic change in ionic flux from the outer and inner cell membranes (higher Ca and Na, lower Mg and K levels) both in the impaired membranes of cancer and of magnesium deficiency. In addition, we find that lead (Pb) salts are more leukemogenic when given to magnesium-deficient rats than when they are given to magnesium-adequate rats, suggesting that magnesium is protective.[12]

The School of Public Health at the Kaohsiung
Medical College in Taiwan found that magnesium
also exerts a protective effect against gastric cancer,
but only for the group with the highest levels.

[1] Fundamentals of combating cancer metastasis by oxygen multistep immunostimulation processes. von Ardenne M.; Med Hypotheses. 1985 May;17(1):47-65;…

[2] Measurements and combat of stress effects (author’s transl); von Ardenne M.; ZFA. 1981;36(6):473-87;

[3]  “High dietary intake of magnesium may decrease risk of colorectal cancer in Japanese men” Volume 140, Pages 779-785 Authors: E. Ma, S. Sasazuki, M. Inoue, M. Iwasaki, N. Sawada, R. Takachi, S. Tsugane, Japan Public Health Center-based Prospective Study Group.

[4] Mg2+ is critical for all of the energetics of the cells because it is absolutely required that Mg2+ be bound (chelated) by ATP (adenosine triphosphate), the central high-energy compound of the body.  ATP without Mg2+ bound cannot create the energy normally used by specific enzymes of the body to make protein, DNA, RNA, transport sodium or potassium or calcium in and out of cells, nor to phosphorylate proteins in response to hormone signals, etc.  In fact, ATP without enough Mg2+ is non-functional and leads to cell death.  Bound Mg2+ holds the triphosphate in the correct stereochemical position so that it can interact with ATP using enzymes and the Mg2+ also polarizes the phosphate backbone so that the ‘backside of the phosphorous’ is more positive and susceptible to attack by nucleophilic agents such as hydroxide ion or other negatively charged compounds. Bottom line, Mg2+ at critical concentrations is essential to life,” says Dr. Boyd Haley who asserts strongly that, “All detoxification mechanisms have as the bases of the energy required to remove a toxicant the need for Mg-ATP to drive the process.  There is nothing done in the body that does not use energy and without Mg2+ this energy can neither be made nor used.” Detoxification of carcinogenic chemical poisons is essential for people want to avoid the ravages of cancer. The importance of magnesium in cancer prevention should not be underestimated.

[5] Magnesium has a central regulatory role in the cell cycle including that of affecting transphorylation and DNA synthesis, has been proposed as the controller of cell growth, rather than calcium. It is postulated that Mg++ controls the timing of spindle and chromosome cycles by changes in intracellular concentration during the cell cycle. Magnesium levels fall as cells enlarge until they reach a level that allows for spindle formation. Mg influx then causes spindle breakdown and cell division.

[6] Hunt, B.J., Belanger, L.F. Localized, multiform, sub-periosteal hyperplasia and generalized osteomyelosclerosis in magnesium-deficient rats. Calcif.Tiss.Res. 1972; 9:17-27.

[7] Durlach J, Bara M, Guiet-Bara A, Collery P. Relationship between magnesium, cancer and carcinogenic or anticancer metals. Anticancer Res. 1986 Nov-Dec;6(6):1353-61.

[8] Anghileri, L.J. Magnesium concentration variations during carcinogenesis.Magnesium Bull.1979; 1:46-48.

[9] Blondell, J.W. The anticancer effect of magnesium.Medical Hypothesis 1980; 6:863-871.

[10] Whitney, R.B., Sutherland, R.M. The influence of calcium, magnesium and cyclic adenosine 3’5’-monophosphate on the mixed lymphocyte reaction. J. Immunol. 1972; 108:1179-1183.

[11] Petitou, M., Tuy, F., Rosenfeld, C., Mishal, Z., Paintrand, M., Jasmin, C., Mathe, G., Inbar, M. Decreased microviscosity of membrane lipids in leukemic cells; two possible mechanisms.Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 1978; 75:2306-2310.

[12] Hass, G.M., McCreary, P.A., Laing, G.H., Galt, R.M. Lymphoproliferative and immumunologic aspects of magnesium deficiency. In Magnesium in Health and Disease (from 2nd Intl Mg Sympos, Montreal, Canada, 1976), b Eds. M. Cantin, M.S. Seelig, Publ. Spectrum Press, NY, 1980, pp 185-200.

[13] Yang CY et al. Jpn J Cancer Res.1998 Feb;89 (2):124-30. Calcium, magnesium, and nitrate in drinking water and gastric cancer mortality.

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Dr. Mark Sircus AC., OMD, DM (P)

Director International Medical Veritas Association
Doctor of Oriental and Pastoral Medicine

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  • bachcole

    Our lead pipes are not our diets. Our lead pipes is the medical profession itself.