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Science Diction: The Origin Of The Word 'Cancer'

Fri, 10/22/2010 - 10:33am

Around 400 B.C., Hippocrates is said to have named masses of cancerous cells karkinos -- Greek for crab. Science and medical historian Howard Markel discusses a few hypotheses on why Hippocrates named the disease after a crab, and how well cancer was understood in the ancient world.

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