CEM Seminar- Paul Ewald

Toward a Unified Theory of Oncogenesis

Paul Ewald, Professor
University of Louisville
Toward a unified, evolutionary theory of cancer
 
Discoveries over the past few decades draw attention to the need for a coherent general theory for oncogenesis, one that fully integrates knowledge about the contribution of genetic, environmental and infectious causes. My presentation offers an evolutionary framework for development of a unified theory, building on the distinction between the small number of changes that are essential for oncogenesis to proceed (i.e., alterations of barriers) and the large number of changes that contribute oncogenesis (alterations of restraints). This framework is sufficiently broad to accommodate new information (e.g., the roles of epigenetic changes), is testable, and has implications for research, care, and prevention. 
 
Paul W. Ewald  is a Professor and Director of the Program on Disease Evolution at University of Louisville, where he holds appointments in the Department of Biology and the Department of Microbiology and Immunology.  His books --Evolution of Infectious Disease (Oxford), Plague Time (Free Press & Anchor), and Controlling Cancer (TED books)--and his scientific articles provide an evolutionary framework for understanding the nature of acute infectious diseases and the role of germs in causing chronic diseases. He was the first recipient of the Smithsonian Institution’s George E. Burch Fellowship in Theoretic Medicine and Affiliated Sciences, which was established to foster pioneering advancements in the health sciences. He was listed as one of Utne Reader's "25 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World"in 2010  and one of Esquire’s “Best and Brightest” for 2005.