Jan 9, 2017

Researchers reveal how cancer cells cope with genetic chaos

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics

Another difference between normal and abnormal cells — cancer cells can continue to grow despite damage to cell structures and changes in the number of chromosomes.

Scientists have uncovered how tumours are able to grow despite significant damage to the structure and number of their chromosomes — the storage units of DNA — according to two new studies published in Cancer Cell and Cancer Discovery today.

“We hope that understanding these mechanisms will allow us to limit drug resistance and improve the efficacy of cancer therapies.” - Professor Charles Swanton

Healthy cells are programmed to self-destruct if there are mistakes in their genes that can’t be fixed, but cancer cells can carry on growing with these abnormalities. Over time, further genetic changes allow them to keep growing, spread, and become resistant to treatment.

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