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Cancer as Very Ancient History

Posted 7/7/2014

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  This is a fascinating and quite discouraging piece from Plon, Germany. The gist of it is that archeologists have discovered the remains of cancer cells in very ancient organisms. Their conclusion is that cancer has been around as long as their have been multi-cellular creatures. On one hand, I find this reassuring as it confirms what a very, very complicated problem cancer is.

  On another hand, their second conclusion that cancer may never be prevented or ured is extremely despressing. While I have much to say about all of this, and  my impatience with those who suggest that a cure is available, but that a secret and greedy clan of pharma and medicine is not sharing it,, I am going to stop due to the previously described Maie internet issues.

  Here is the start from Eureka Alert and a link to read more:

Cancer: The roots of evil go deep in time

Discovery of a primordial cancer in a primitive animal

Every year around 450,000 people in Germany are diagnosed with cancer. Each one of them dreams of a victory in the battle against it. But can cancer ever be completely defeated? Researchers at Kiel University (CAU) have now reached a sobering conclusion: "cancer is as old as multi-cellular life on earth and will probably never be completely eradicated", says Professor Thomas Bosch in his latest research results. The study by an international team led by Bosch was published today (Monday, June 24) in the prestigious scientific journal Nature Communications.

The so-called cancer genes are ancient

The causes of tumours are the so-called cancer genes. As from when evolution started producing tumours is an issue that the scientists Tomislav Domazet-Lošo and Diethard Tautz from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön have been investigating for several years, using bio-informational methods and databases that they have developed in-house. "During the search for the origin of the cancer gene, we unexpectedly made a discovery in the ancient group of animals", explains Domazet-Lošo. He is one of the authors of the present study and is currently working at the Ruder Bošković Institute and the Catholic University of Croatia in Zagreb. "Our data predicted that the first multi-cellular animals already had most of the genes which can cause cancer in humans." What was missing until now was, on the one hand, evidence that these animals can actually suffer from tumours and, on the other, the molecular understanding of the mechanisms of tumour formation in these simple animals.


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