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DNA Replication Errors Now Accepted as Cause of Substantial Number of Cancer Cases

Most textbooks attribute cancer-causing mutations to two major sources: inherited and environmental factors. A recent study highlighted the prominent role in cancer of replicative (R) mutations that arise from a third source: unavoidable errors associated with DNA replication. Tomasetti et al. developed a method for determining the proportions of cancer-causing mutations that result from inherited, environmental, and replicative factors (see the Perspective by Nowak and Waclaw). They found that a substantial fraction of cancer driver gene mutations are indeed due to replicative factors. The results are consistent with epidemiological estimates of the fraction of preventable cancers.

Cancers are caused by mutations that may be inherited, induced by environmental factors, or result from DNA replication errors (R). We studied the relationship between the number of normal stem cell divisions and the risk of 17 cancer types in 69 countries throughout the world. The data revealed a strong correlation (median = 0.80) between cancer incidence and normal stem cell divisions in all countries, regardless of their environment. The major role of R mutations in cancer etiology was supported by an independent approach, based solely on cancer genome sequencing and epidemiological data, which suggested that R mutations are responsible for two-thirds of the mutations in human cancers. All of these results are consistent with epidemiological estimates of the fraction of cancers that can be prevented by changes in the environment. Moreover, they accentuate the importance of early detection and intervention to reduce deaths from the many cancers arising from unavoidable R mutations

http://science.sciencemag.org/content/355/6331/1330

People in this world look at things mistakenly, and think that what they do not understand must be the void. This is not the true void. It is bewilderment.
- Miyamoto Musashi, The Book of Five Rings

Comments

  • The interesting thing to note is that environmental factors were pretty insignificant regardless of where in the world the cancer cases were selected from.

    The idea that cancer may be mostly an "expiration date" mechanism seems to be getting a lot of proof.  It may be why there is no "cure" for cancer - it isn't a sickness so much as it is a failure of our bodies to operate as they once did.  DNA damage, and not a disease.  Smoking, harmful industrial byproducts, radiation and other dangerous sources seem to invite cancer by speeding up the process.

    I've seen data to suggest that as much as 50% or more of all people will get cancer simply by reaching advanced old age, regardless of a history of smoking, drinking or other factors.  That means that between myself and you, the person reading this sentence, one of is will probably have some kind of cancer eventually (if not both of us).

    Interestingly, early detection and surgeries seems capable of stopping cancer in many cases.  Not curing it, but simply removing the cancer cells from the body entirely as one would remove a faulty RAM chip from a computer.

    Perhaps a proper "cure" for cancer will simply be a complete collection of accessible procedures through which to safely and reliably remove the cancer from anywhere in a body, no matter how advanced. 
    People in this world look at things mistakenly, and think that what they do not understand must be the void. This is not the true void. It is bewilderment.
    - Miyamoto Musashi, The Book of Five Rings
  • RosieRosie Member, Permitted to post new threads
    edited March 25

    That means that between myself and you, the person reading this sentence, one of is will probably have some kind of cancer eventually (if not both of us).

    ....some get it not by smoking themselves or from old age but by breathing passive smoke residue, caused by living with someone who does even if that person doesn't smoke in the house. 


    "We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."

  • tazweisstazweiss Member, Permitted to post new threads

    Interestingly enough, I read somewhere, years ago that a number of diseases, especially cancer, are mostly a result of our bodies aging.  Idea was that the cells in our body can only replicate so many times before they begin to break down.  Much like taking a photocopy of a photocopy, of a photocopy.  Eventually flaws begin to appear and compound.  As medical science has allowed us to live longer, our cells are still pre-programmed to only replicate a certain number of times.  It's sometimes referred to as replicative fading.

    To put it simply, medical science has allowed us to live longer than we should and things like cancer are natures way of correcting the imbalance.

    If the politicians treat people this poorly when they're armed to the teeth,

    just imagine what they'll be willing to do once they've disarmed everyone.

  • RosieRosie Member, Permitted to post new threads
    Sadly there's multiple causes, aging, genetic, radiation, sunlight uv rays, environmental (i.e. smoking, chemicals, alcohol, food additives, factory and mining processes and probably more)

    "We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."

  • tazweisstazweiss Member, Permitted to post new threads
    Sadly there's multiple causes, aging, genetic, radiation, sunlight uv rays, environmental (i.e. smoking, chemicals, alcohol, food additives, factory and mining processes and probably more)

    Many of those things didn't have a large effect on us way back when.  Our life span wasn't long enough.

    If the politicians treat people this poorly when they're armed to the teeth,

    just imagine what they'll be willing to do once they've disarmed everyone.

  • RosieRosie Member, Permitted to post new threads

    Our life span wasn't long enough.

    Agreed. In countries such as Africa and India it still isn't and those countries have larger families which ensures the population pyramid stays the right way up, unlike in the West. In Australia half of Aboriginal men and and 1/3 of Aboriginal women die by 45 according to statistics. Their reduced lifespan can largely be put down to the diet we encouraged them to eat plus cigarettes and alcohol which we also use.

    In Western society we're family planning ourselves out of existence so that both parents can work in order to give those one or two children the best to set them up in life (mainly i-pads, x-boxes and mobile phones by age 10 plus their own way in everything). The fast fatty food and sedentary indoor lifestyle they become accustomed to by age two  won't help their longevity -  though  it will minimise melanomas and skin cancer probably.  I wouldn't mind guessing cancer is a bigger killer in the West than in undeveloped countries where they can only afford to eat rice and vegies and maintain fitness by avoiding excessive weight gain.

    I absolutely agree cancer can be caused by DNA inherited variants and by cells failing to replicate correctly due to aging process, however we help it along by our daily use of all sorts of chemicals, eating GMO  food and using food additives and preservatives, chemicals to deodorise the house and car, insect spray, weed killer etc.  I've been told by a specialist that even stress can cause cancer.

    I'd be interested to know percentage wise in the West are we really living longer than say 100 years ago or are we believing that due to the media feeding positive information about medical trials that may extend our lives another 10 years?  How many do live an extra few years only because they're being given medical treatments for cancer, heart disease or other conditions that leave them wasted, debilitated or reliant on a motorised scooter.


    "We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."

  • Matt_ADMIN_Matt_ADMIN_ Administrator
    There was a scientific study mentioned in the documentary "Forks over knives" called the "China Study" that showed the poor, rural Chinese who couldn't afford to eat animal products had very low or non-existent rates of heart disease and cancer 
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    "...Say, 'GOD is sufficient for me.' In Him the trusters shall trust." (Quran 39:38)
  • RosieRosie Member, Permitted to post new threads
    edited March 26
    At the end of the day what matters is that the medical fraternity still use chemotherapy most of the time to arrest or cure cancer.  Most of the time it returns so we are only delaying the inevitable.  I know someone who accepted chemotherapy for his prostate cancer.  It decimated him so rapidly from the outside in numerous ways that he asked them to stop it after the specialist said the chemo was killing him quicker than the cancer.  Other people  in the clinic being treated ended up palid, hairless, weakened shells of their former selves during treatment similar to him unable to walk without assistance.  It went to his bones and then to his lungs and then to his skin. He had 3 years of being so weakened from the effects of the chemo after he stopped it he could only sit on the front porch and 9 months then three short stays at hospital before the cancer took it's toll.  However most people take the gamble believing living in ill health is better than not living even if it's in the chains of illness and misery.

    "We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."

  • RosieRosie Member, Permitted to post new threads
    That cancer wasn't from faulty DNA Replication or old age. Drinking water contaminated with Agent Orange in Vietnam was the proven cause.

    "We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."

  • Matt_ADMIN_Matt_ADMIN_ Administrator
    edited March 26
    How do we know cancer is even a bad thing? I'm not trying to be provocative or anything, but what if cancer is the body's way of fighting some huge imbalance that requires severe intervention? Maybe it's a signal that something else is awry.

    I've read studies of people who left their cancer alone as it were, and it went away on its own. They showed up on the day of surgery and there was nothing there to actually operate on.

    I've also read testimonies from surgeons about the impossibility of curing cancer through outside intervention: one conducted 1000s of surgeries, and there were only 5-6 cases where the cancer didn't come back (!) - so obviously the root cause isn't being cured.

    I don't buy the theory that "we're living too long" and the body begins to shut itself down, personally. There's an alternate possibility: that once you live long enough in a poisonous society, the body's ability to fight off all the toxins becomes lesser than the toxins' ability to do harm, hence disease begins to move in.


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    "...Say, 'GOD is sufficient for me.' In Him the trusters shall trust." (Quran 39:38)
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