Leading European Oncologist Discusses Systemic Oral Enzyme Therapy and Cancer
"The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease."
"...serum levels of the enzymes increased remarkably in vivo (in the human) after oral applications." - Peter R. Rothschild, MD, Ph.D.
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All information presented is for education and research and is not intended to diagnose or prescribe treatment. Order Wobenzym N Here Seacoastvitamins Homepage Email Us Other Articles Thrombosis Joint Disease Tinnitus Aspirin vs. Enzymes Cancer Therapeutics Breast Cancer Mucos Pharma website www.mucos.cz Evolution of a Mainstream Doctor From Sceptic to True Believer How Systemic Oral Enzymes Help Clinical Observations The Doctor's Prescription Leading European Oncologist Discusses Systemic Oral Enzyme Therapy & Cancer by Dr. Heinrich Wrba from The Doctor's Prescription for Healthy Living - Volume 4, Number 4
Even now in his mid-eighties when he maintains great health and an active lifestyle, Dr. Heinrich Wrba remembers back to another time.
He was forty. It was after the war. One of his children - a daughter, Michaela Siedon - was stricken with leukemia. For two years she fought the disease, but nothing could help, and the treatments themselves were painful and debilitating to the child.
When we met for this interview he stated bluntly, "Chemotherapy killed her."
This from one of Europe's leading oncologists.
To lose a child . . .
Today with some 200 publications in prestigious medical journals, Dr. Wrba has quietly and permanently changed the way cancer is treated throughout Europe. He has educated a generation of European oncologists on the value of systemic oral enzymes in the treatment of cancer. It hasn't been easy. And it hasn't always been smooth sailing. As in America, overcoming widespread negative mythologies has been one of the greatest roadblocks. But amazing things are happening on both continents - suddenly the concept of protease therapy as an important aspect of cancer treatment is catching on in a major way.
In America, the National Cancer Institute is funding a large-scale study on the value of oral enzymes in cancer treatment (see our report in volume 4.3: 10-11, 18), and the Food and Drug Administration has awarded investigational new drug status to a systemic oral enzyme formula. Major advances in cancer therapeutics with enzyme preparations have been made in Europe as well.
It was some years after the death of his daughter when Dr. Wrba was head of the federally sanctioned Cancer Research Institute in Vienna that he met Dr. Karl Ransberger, a molecular biologist with a doctorate from Fordham University and one of the co-developers with Dr. Max Wolf of modern systemic oral enzyme therapy.
"Dr. Ransberger told me about systemic oral enzyme therapy, but, naturally, being from the academic world, I responded with the 'school opinion' that enzymes were large macromolecules that could not be absorbed from the gut. We had all learned that, once ingested, proteins are degraded into amino acids. That was my first objection - and that was the end of the story as far as I was concerned."
Still, Dr. Ransberger persisted. He insisted Dr. Wrba take a package of the systemic oral enzyme preparation. "It was not long after that I was in a hunting party and having lunch. A servant woman, knowing I was a doctor, came up to me, hobbling, using a cane. She told me how she suffered terribly from arthritis and could hardly walk or perform her duties. I didn't know what to do for her. Out of desperation, I gave her the systemic oral enzymes. . . . A few weeks later when I returned, she was doing much better. I was impressed."
That was when Dr. Wrba contacted Drs. Ransberger and Wolf to learn more about their research into systemic oral enzyme therapy. He quickly came to realize two important facts about oral systemic enzyme therapy:
This was especially true in the use of enzymes and cancer. "Progress," says Dr. Wrba, "came much more quickly in all other fields such as vascular disease, rheumatology and hematology - but not for cancer therapeutics. The thinking among oncologists was and has been for so long that a 'drug' or, in this case, a natural medicine, without side effects cannot have beneficial effects. It is the age old concept that a substance must have some poisonous qualities to be of benefit. It took such a long time for a breakthrough."
In 1965, Dr. Wrba was invited to become Chair of Oncology at the University of Vienna. Throughout his professional work, he has carried the message of oral systemic enzyme therapy to his colleagues.
What Dr. Wrba has seen in treating more than one-thousand patients and overseeing countless other cases has convinced him of the utility of systemic oral enzyme therapy in cancer therapeutics.
In Germany, systemic oral enzymes are not officially accepted for cancer therapeutics, says Dr. Wrba, yet, in practice, "almost every patient gets them."
Dr. Wrba explained how systemic oral enzymes help in the prevention of cancer and in cancer therapeutics. Cancerous or diseased cells are a fact of life, but most of these cells are quickly destroyed by the body's contingent of white blood cells which form the firewall of the immune system. Other cancerous cells wander aimlessly about via the blood stream but are so few in number and unable to attach to any tissues that they ultimately die off.
But under detrimental influences such as environmental pollution, tobacco smoke, sunburn, radiation, and environmentally weakened or age-related lapses in immunity, the balance between friend and foe is disrupted. The body is no longer capable of suppressing the cancer cells. When a significant number of cells escape destruction, their capabilities change. Some are capable of adhering to cell walls and begin their "dirty tricks" campaign. Almost seemingly capable of sensing that the body's immune defenders might recognize them, the cancer cells hide themselves under a thick coat of adhesive fibrin, a coat that is some fifteen times more thick than the fibrin over normal cells. The thickened coat hides away their suspicious markings, including their antigens, from the body's immune defenders. The cancer cells with their sticky coating can adhere to tissues where they congregate and multiply. To throw the body's immune cells further off track, the cancerous cells may slough off their antigens. The immune cells immediately attack these harmless proteins but leave the cancerous cells unharmed. It is a type of warfare that could make a military general envious.
The cancer cells grow because of the absence or inadequate presence of enzymes that are capable of striping the fibrin away from the individual cancer cells. Adequate enzyme activity can lay bare their antigens and so pave the way for their destruction by the body's immune cells. The more cancer cells the body produces, the more enzymes that are required.
At the Austrian Cancer Research Institute at the University of Vienna, Dr. Wrba and his researchers have long been studying the role that systemic oral enzymes play in disrupting cancerous processes. Working with Dr. Lucia Desser, the team discovered that treating cells with enzyme mixtures caused substantial secretions of a chemical called tumor necrosis factor. Tumor necrosis factor or TNF is secreted by immune cells and is capable of attacking cancer cells and those cells infected with viruses. It is vital to our body's cancer defenses.
In general, enzymes are used as complementary therapy in combination with other modes of treatment. Clinical data support their efficacious use in brain tumors; epithelial tumors in the region of the head and neck; lung cancer; malignant melanoma; leukemia; T cell lymphomas; stomach and colon cancer; cancerous diseases of the abdomen; pancreatic cancer; and tumors of the cervix, breast and uterus. The benefits extend to life prolongation, quality of life, and improvement in cancer markers.
Dr. Wrba notes that Paul Ehrlich (1854-1915), a famous German physician and scientist, had already established a theory at the beginning of the century that the development of cancer is dependent on the results of the "fight" between the tumor cells and the immunological system. "The strength of the immunological system and the particular characteristics of the tumor cells are responsible for the outcome of this conflict," notes Dr. Wrba. "These characteristics include the malignancy of the tumor or its tendency to metastasize and to penetrate into other tissues, as well as its capability of disguising itself from the immune cells. The recognition of tumor cells by the immunological system is a very difficult procedure. It should not be forgotten that tumor cells differ only insignificantly from healthy cells - a cause for problems with the defensive system. In spite of these difficulties, and according to the knowledge presently available, the healthy immunological system is nonetheless able to recognize and to destroy the great majority of tumor cells."
"As a logical consequence, there are two modes of therapy for the immunological treatment of cancer," continues the doctor. "Attempts are made both to increase the recognizability of the tumor cells for the immunological system (that is, their immunogenicity) as well as to strengthen and stimulate the various parts of the immunological system. Proteolytic enzymes are able to play a role in both aspects of this therapeutic strategy. They increase immunogenicity of the tumor cells and, at the same time, support the immunological system of patients at various levels."
"Using 20 to 30 tablets twice daily [of Wobenzym N or similar Mucos Pharma GmbH enzyme mixtures], we see improvement," Dr. Wrba says. "I have seen about one-third of cases of pancreatic cancer that were completely cured with about two-thirds not responding well, which for this cancer is an excellent outcome. Based on experience, the outcome for most patients is improved with systemic oral enzyme therapy. Enzymes rank as my favorite adjuvant medicine for every type of cancer. It is very essential to take them in very high doses. We can force a beneficial effect at 30 pills three times daily."
Today, in Europe, although enzymes are not necessarily officially part of cancer treatment protocols, Dr. Wrba estimates that about 90 percent of cancer patients are given them or told to take them unofficially. What happened many years ago to his Michaela Siedon could never be changed. But what Dr. Wrba has accomplished since them has changed the course of survival for so many cancer patients.
Everyday Dr. Wrba takes 15 to 20 Wobenzym N tablets to help reduce his risk for cancer and to take advantage of their overall healthful properties. He advises anyone interested in reducing their cancer risk or in fighting premature aging to use Wobenzym N systemic oral enzymes, which are available at health food stores and natural product supermarkets nationwide.
In cancer treatment, work with your doctor, he advises. Dosages of up to 30 pills three times daily may be necessary.
Wrba, H. & Pecher, O. Enzymes: A Drug of the Future. Ecomed Verlagsgesellschaft AG & Co., 1993
The following is reprinted from www.apricotsfromgod.com. The Apricots From God website was removed from the Internet under court order in the United States apparently because they were selling apricot seeds. However, you can often find remnants of old web sites at www.archive.org which is where we found this article.
(In short, Enzymes digest the cancer cell wall so that other things can get in and kill the rest of the cell. Dr. Kelly has an enzyme therapy that is expensive but digests the tumor in four weeks.)
The Keys to Life
These powerfully active natural chemicals are protein-mineral complexes which occur in all living things and make possible virtually all of the many biochemical reactions in the body. They are indispensable to life and to good health.
Whenever there is a significant reduction in the presence or the availability of enzymes, sickness and degeneration begin.
These keys to life can be roughly divided into three types: those derived from food, digestive enzymes, and metabolic enzymes.
Food enzymes are abundantly present in all uncooked vegetables, fruits, and grains. They assist in the breakdown of the food in which they are present and also perform other useful functions in the body. Food processing commonly employed today destroys nearly all of the enzymes normally present in foods. Whatever enzymes may remain after processing at the factory are finished off at home on the range.
Cooking by whatever means, except for very light steaming, will completely destroy all enzymes in food - even the foods that were healthy to start with.
Destroying the enzymes in food places an extra burden on the second group, the digestive enzymes. These are normally made by the pancreas, which produces a specific digestive enzyme for the breakdown and assimilation of each type of food we consume - lipase for fats, amylase for carbohydrates or sugars, and proteases for different types of protein.
Metabolic enzymes make up the third and most abundant group of enzymes in the body, and these function within the cell to regulate such activity as detoxification, oxygen utilization and energy production, along with a multitude of life-sustaining and disease fighting functions.
There are over 3000 enzyme systems at work in the body. Performing a vast number of functions, these indispensable substances hold the keys to life. They assist greatly in the rebuilding of all tissues in the body by breaking down ingested protein into its component amino acids which the body uses as building blocks for repair and rejuvenation. They attack waste materials in the blood and in the tissues, converting them into a form that can be readily eliminated, thereby acting as blood purifiers.
The immune system depends heavily upon enzymes for all of its functions. To enumerate all of the actions of enzymes in detail would take several volumes and need not be elaborated upon in this small book. Suffice it to say that they are essential to the performance of every function of every organ system in our bodies.
Many white blood cells produce and utilize enzymes as a necessary part of their function. Front-line soldiers of the white cell army, called macrophages, discussed elsewhere in this book (see Chapter Al), are indispensable fighters of the cellular part of the immune system. They are the "cleanup crew" or "sanitation department" of the body.
Literally "big eaters," these macrophages permeate every tissue in the body, seeking out, attacking, surrounding, ingesting, and digesting, by enzyme activity all foreign materials - toxins from outside and inside the body, dead or dying cells, degenerating cells, and of, course, cancer cells.
Needless to say, these warriors are absolutely essential in protecting the body from cancer as well as in fighting cancer once it has secured a foothold. Great care must be exercised to protect these hungry macrophages lest toxic residues, microorganisms and abnormal cells accumulate in the tissues, blood and Iymph, leading to degenerative disease, including cancer.
A myriad of environmental toxins, stress, poor dietary habits, drugs (especially chemotherapeutic agents) all have inhibiting effects on these important fighters and their enzymatic activity.(l)
Another cancer-fighter, the T-lymphocyte, more specifically the killer T-cell, attacks cancer cells in a similar manner, utilizing enzymes in its ability to dissolve and digest tumor cells (see Chapter VI). As we have seen these fighters are part of a highly integrated system capable of recognizing cancer cells, then attacking and destroying them. This information is extensively utilized by alternative care
110 CANCER AND COMMON SENSE
Physicians, such as myself, in designing an effective program to combat cancer or any disease, such as AIDS, which has immune deficiency as its principal feature.
Other enzymes, particularly the proteolytic enzymes from the pancreas, have the unique ability to break down the muco-protein coating which encases all malignant tumors and protects cancer cells from attack by the body's immune system.
Enzymes also protect the body against cancer particularly metastatic or spreading cancer - in other ways.
Pre-cancer cells become attached to body tissues by means of fibrin, a protein component necessary for blood clotting. Enyzmes digest away the fibrin, preventing the attachment of pre-cancerous and cancerous cells to body tissues, thus releasing these abnormal cells into the circulating blood where they are normally destroyed by the fighters described above.
Research has shown that enzymes in this case, bromelain, a protein-digesting vegetable enzyme - have the power to transform cancer cells to normal cells. This and other evidence seems to indicate that - in addition to their many other attributes - enzymes may have a directly normalizing effect on cancer cells.(1)
Enzymes also have an activating effect on the immune system and are believed to be an integral part of that system. Studies have shown that cancer is associated with severe deficiencies of many enzymes.
This knowledge is not new.
A century ago, Scottish embryologist John Beard (see Chapter Lip, in spite of having little knowledge of enzymes, discovered that by taking pancreas tissue from young animals he could extract a liquid which was effective in causing tumor reduction.
Practicing in England, Dr. Beard would inject his pancreatic extract either directly into accessible tumors or into the muscle or vein of the patient. Even some advanced cancers considered to be incurable were made to completely disappear. He was able to help or apparently cure over half of his patients, most with advanced cancers, a far cry from today's dismal statistics.(2)
His was a crude preparation, containing impurities and foreign proteins which produced some allergic reactions. For this he was roundly criticized and attacked by his peers in the medical profession, not unlike organized medicine's attacks today on the innovative physician.
His attackers tried to "put him out of business" by discrediting him, pointing to the adverse reactions and to the patients who died despite his treatment. This also reminds us of the prevailing bias among mainstream physicians today - namely, that it is acceptable for a patient to die while under conventional treatment (or because of it), but it is definitely not tolerable for this to happen while a patient is under alternative care.
Because there arose such a demand for Dr. Beard's pancreatic enzyme preparation, English physicians were hounded by their patients to be treated with this miraculous substance. Consequently, 8 attempts were made to duplicate the material, pharmacists obtaining pancreatic juice from local slaughterhouses
The trouble was, the pancreases were taken from older animals with far less enzymatic activity than the younger animals which Beard had made sure were the source of his material. The other factor which rendered the attempted duplication totally ineffective was the passage of time. Enzymes have a relatively short "shelf life," being "live" substances and remaining active only for a matter of hours after removal from the animal.
Beard had been careful to use only freshly removed pancreases for his material. Thus, the obtaining of material by other physicians through "normal channels," i.e. slaughterhouses, pharmacists, couriers, etc., resulted in enough delay that the enzymes were rendered completely useless.
Since Dr. Beard's colleagues had no success with their inactive enzyme material, the concept and method of treatment sadly fell into disrepute and into obscurity. Fortunately, in 1907 Beard wrote a book about his experiences in treating cancer patients and his hypothesis of the causation of cancer, now known as the "trophoblast" theory, so his work was not completely lost to posterity (see Chapter IV). However, for nearly 50 years there was no significant activity in the area of enzymes and cancer, Beard's work having been forgotten, and consensus medicine of the day having returned to its certainty that enzymes could not have anything to do with cancer, much less anything to do with curing it.
Next on the enzyme scene was Dr. Max Wolf, a professor at Columbia University, New York. Dr. Wolf had developed an interest in enzymes and cancer and had written to all of the medical libraries in the US and much of the Western world seeking information on the subject.
112 CANCER AND COMMON SENSE
Reading virtually everything that had ever been written about the subject up to that time, Wolf became probably the world's leading authority on enzymes and their relationship to cancer. One of the books he managed to locate and read was John Beard's book, of which there were then precious few remaining.
Working at his research laboratory at Columbia in the 1950s, Wolf designed a complicated and extensive study of the effect of enzymes on cancer cells.(4,5) Thousands of cell cultures were prepared with normal cells and cancer cells living and growing together. Each of these cultures was then treated with a particular enzyme or combination of enzymes to determine which was most effective in killing cancer cells while preserving normal ones.
A wide range of enzymes and combinations was tested in this way to establish the most potent combination which would safely avoid damaging normal cells. Because of Wolf's connections in Germany (and because of the inhibiting presence of the American FDA), clinical work was carried out in that country using the final formula on human cancer victims with highly favorable results.
This particular mixture of enzymes survives to this day as Wobe-Mugos - the "Wobe" part being derived from the names Wolf and Benitez (Wolf's partner in all of this work) - which has been used to treat tens of thousands of cancer patients in Germany over approximately the last 30 years. This material, along with a companion product called Wobenzyme, has also been used in the US by a few physicians, including myself, as well as in several Mexican clinics.
Also available from Germany is an injectable preparation of Wobe-Mugos enzymes, which I have found quite useful in treating accumulations of fluid in the chest, called pleural effusions, when these accumulations are due to cancer. This has been done in Germany for many years with consistent success. Collections of abdominal fluid, called ascites, can be treated in like manner. In addition, any tumor which is accessible by needle may be treated with this material.
These and other similar enzyme products have a wide application in medicine, being effective against many inflammatory conditions - arthritis, autoimmune diseases, injuries, blood clots, and phlebitis, to name a few - as well as against cancer.
I consider enzymes to be indispensable in the management and control of cancer. If I were to be limited to a single nutritional substance in this management, it would probably be enzymes.
To illustrate the importance of enzymes and to show why their decrease or disturbance represents such a prevalent problem in Western society, I would indulge the reader in a brief lesson in anatomy and physiology.
Herbivorous animals (non-cheating vegetarians) have an extra pouch above the stomach which has the purpose of carrying out predigestion. As we have seen, raw plant foods contain their own enzymes, and the pre-stomach sac in the animal allows the food to be pre-digested by its own enzymes, along with enzymes in the saliva, before passing on to gastric or stomach digestion. (See figure A next page.)
Not well known is the fact that humans have similar equipment for two-stage digestion. Dr. Edward Howell, among others, has done research demonstrating that the human stomach is, physiologically, actually two stomachs, each performing a distinctly separate function. The upper stomach, called the cardiac portion (because of its location beneath the heart, not because it has anything directly to do with the heart), acts as a "storage bag," with none of the peristaltic action (churning) such as that which is present throughout the remainder of the digestive tract.
This portion of the stomach has few if any, of the glands that secrete hydrochloric acid and enzymes so prevalent in the lower portion of the stomach. This relatively inert bag at the human stomach's upper end corresponds to what Howell calls the food enzyme stomach in animals, the purpose of which is to allow enzyme containing foods and salivary enzymes to pre-digest food, preparing it for gastric digestion.(3)
By eating enzyme-poor foods, cooking or processing out what few enzymes remain in food, then eating too much of this, it is easy to see that we of the Western world have under-used our enzyme-food stomachs and placed an extra burden on the remainder of the digestive apparatus.
In the lower or pyloric portion of the stomach, food is more actively broken down by hydrochloric acid, pepsin, and other gastric enzymes. This part of the stomach has very active peristaltic movement in contrast with the relatively quiescent upper part.
Now overburdened by inadequately digested food, the pyloric stomach then passes this burden on to the duodenum or first part of the small intestine, where enzymes from the pancreas try to deal with the bad hand they have been dealt.
Unwholesome meal after unwholesome meal, year after year, takes a profound toll on the enzyme "pool," the total enzymes available in the intestinal tract and elsewhere. Like being repeatedly overdrawn at the bank eventually something bad happens. Not only bad dietary habits but aging further depletes our store of enzymes, contributing to the perpetual withdrawal problem. It is thus exceedingly important to keep putting "money in the bank" in the form of food enzymes from uncooked vegetables, fruits, grains, sprouts, digestive enzymes and food enzyme supplements. And this includes supplements to help compensate for the body's store of decreased or missing "antioxidant" enzymes (see Chapter m), which also have a role to play in cancer. Studies have shown that in patients with pancreatic cancer and post-surgical breast cancer treated with enzymes, survival rates were significantly better than for those not treated with enzymes.(6) It is my carefully considered opinion that a chronic deficiency of total enzymes available to the body is a major factor contributing to the development of cancer and other degenerative diseases, and that enzymes from both animal and vegetable sources have a definite place in the management and treatment of the cancer patient.
1. Maurer, H. et al., "Bromelain induces the differentiation of Ieukemia cells in vitro: an explanation for its cytostatic effects?" Planta Med. 377-81, 1986.
2. Beard, J., Enzyme Therapy of Cancer. In Vienna: Maudrich-Verlag, 1971. Wolt; M. (Hrsg),
3. Howell, E., Enzyme Nutrition - The Food Enzyme Concept. Wayne NJ: Avery Publishing, 1985.
4. Wolf, M.; Ransberger, K., Enzyme Therapy. Vienna, MaudrichVerlag, 1970.
5. Lopez, D., et al., Enzymes - The Fountain of Life. Neville Press, 1994.
6. Boit, J., "Digestive Enzymes." in: Cancer and Natural Medicine: A Textbook of Basic Science and Clinical Research, pp 165-6. Princeton, MN: Oregon Medical Press.
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