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To the Editor:—
Dr. Little's masterly review of his own work and that of others (The Journal, May 13) in the field of cancer and parental influences gives us all food for thought. The concept of inhibition of differentiated cells with subsequent cell division on release has multifold ramifications not only in the study of neoplasms but in that of other pathologic changes.One possibility immediately comes to mind in the light of recent studies wherein arthritic changes were found to occur after the use of large doses of synthetic adrenal cortex extract. The work of Wooley, Fekete and Little points out that gonad deficiency as in castration releases the adrenal inhibitor with subsequent adrenal changes in certain strains. Is it not probable that aging with its accompanying gonad deficiency will do the same, and may this not be a prime cause of arthritis in certain individuals? We already know
Goldweber JK. PARENTAL INFLUENCE ON THE INCIDENCE OF CANCER. JAMA. 1944;125(7):512. doi:10.1001/jama.1944.02850250051022