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56 votes

Why are organs not harvested from deceased cancer patients?

There are different reasons why cancer patients are mostly excluded from donating organs. Although the probability of transmitting cancer is small, it is not zero. Also tumors tend to form metastases ...
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42 votes
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Can vitamin B17 cure cancer?

Laetrile/Amygdalin has been claimed to be a suitable treatment for 'cancer' (which is a summary term for an extremely heterogeneous class of diseases). Even though laetrile/amygdalin in these claims ...
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38 votes
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Is it possible to make a vaccine against cancer?

It is not only possible, these vaccines are in active development. Biontech (the company which developed the Comirnaty Corona vaccine) was founded to develop vaccines against cancer, Moderna is ...
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36 votes
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Can a cancerous cell from outside cause cancer in a healthy person?

Can a cancer cells from someone else's body cause cancer in a healthy person? No. Cancer cells from another person cannot cause cancer in a healthy person. The rare cases of transmissible tumors all ...
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28 votes

Can a cancerous cell from outside cause cancer in a healthy person?

Before OP edited his/her question, it was a little unclear whether the question was only about humans. The following answer is more general than asked as it also considers cancers in non-humans Most ...
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24 votes
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Why are organs not harvested from deceased cancer patients?

On of the main reasons why cancers are normally not transmissible between different people is basically the same reason as why organ transplants are difficult: histocompatibility. Every human cell ...
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21 votes
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Is cancer caused by vitamin B17 deficiency?

Short Answer: No. Background: First of all, there is no such thing as vitamin B17. The compound, amygdalin or laetrile, which is referred to by this term, is not a vitamin1. Amygdalin is indeed a ...
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19 votes

What are the differences between cancer and tumour?

A tumour is simply a space-occupying lesion (something that should not be there, that is; a "lump") caused by abnormal cell replication. (In medicine, the word "tumour" literally means "swelling", ...
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17 votes

Why does UV radiation from the Sun cause skin cancer?

Rather than 'breaks' caused by high energy radiation, UV radiation causes chemical modifications of the bases ('letters') that make up DNA. There are four bases in the DNA alphabet abbreviated to A,T,...
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16 votes
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Why should a tumor look like a crab?

Such projections are more formally known as spiculations. Most commonly, we talk about spiculations with respect to the radiographic appearance of malignant breast and lung lesions. This paper* ...
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15 votes
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Have there been studies done to test Immortality of cancer cells in culture?

The HeLa cell line is undoubtedly the most used and investigated human immortal tumor cell line. Extracted from a cervical tumor from Henrietta Lacks in 1951 at Johns Hopkins hospital, Baltimore, MD ...
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15 votes

Why does UV radiation from the Sun cause skin cancer?

There are very many photochemical reactions: Up to 50–100 mutagenic reactions on DNA per second might occur in a skin cell during exposure to sunlight, but are usually corrected within seconds by ...
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15 votes

Is it possible to make a vaccine against cancer?

Might not be the answer you're looking for, but there's already a vaccine for one particular type of cancer - cervical cancer. Cervical cancer is largely caused by a virus though (HPV, Human ...
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14 votes
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Does homeopathic or herbal treatment of cancer have any scientific recognition?

The methodology behind homeopathy is scientific nonsense. If you dilute anything a billion times, it will have no chemical effect, not even if you shake it all the while. So no, homeopathy does ...
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14 votes

Is cancer caused by vitamin B17 deficiency?

Short version: This is nonsense, cancer does not arise from nutritional deficiencies. Long version: The substance is called Amygdalin, a poisonous cyanogenic glycoside. It can be found in higher ...
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13 votes
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Are all mutagens carcinogens?

Short answer All mutagens are potential carcinogens unless the mutagen is highly specific to a site. As noted in the question, carcinogens need not be mutagenic. HPV causes oncogenic transformation ...
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13 votes

Are all carcinogens mutagens?

How can a non-mutagenic agent be carcinogenic? An agent that causes overexpression of oncogenes or inhibition of tumor suppressors, would be carcinogenic but not mutagenic. HPV, for instance, produces ...
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12 votes
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Why do people with Down syndrome get fewer cancers?

This is a great question. Just to make it clear people with DS do have a reduced risk of solid cancers and an increased risk of blood cancers, (B-ALL and AML). You are correct in picking out DSRC1 ...
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12 votes

Why are cancer rates low in large animals?

Short answer Large animals do get cancer. They may contract cancer with an incidence less than that estimated by absolute cell numbers, but there seems to be a lack of data on cancer rates in large ...
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12 votes

Are all carcinogens mutagens?

Alcohol itself is non-mutagenic because it does not directly alter DNA. (Additionally ethanol enhances carcinogenesis and is itself not a carcinogen - updated) There are similar non-mutagenic ...
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10 votes

Henrietta Lacks and HeLa cells

The cells never died in the sense that they kept replicating, individual cells still died. They were safely cultured in petri dishes before Henrietta Lacks died. The cells came from a tumor that ...
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9 votes
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Why are only few cigarette smokers prone to cancer?

Cigarette smokers are most certainly prone to cancer. See Cecil Medicine, Chapter 183, on the epidemiology of cancer, exposure to tobacco is the most important environmental risk factor for cancer ...
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8 votes

Why is sarcoma more prevalent and common in right heart?

Ewing's sarcoma is a bone cancer. As such, it does not arise as a primary tumor in the heart. Ewing's sarcoma does metastasize. Like any metastatic cancer, it seeds along it's venous return to the ...
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8 votes
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Isn't biological immortality strictly speaking impossible?

Good question. There are many organisms that are technically biologically immortal. However, I would like to point out that the definition of biological immortality is this: ...cells that are not ...
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  • 1,846
7 votes
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About sharks and how they find fish

Sharks sense their prey with the normal senses, they see, hear and smell them. They have a remarkable sensitive sense of smelling, which enables them to sense highly diluted traces of prey. They can ...
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7 votes
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Can/Have cancer cells be/been used in stem cell culture lines?

Cancer cells can be and are used in cell culture. HeLa cells were the first human cell line to be grown in culture and they were derived from a cervical tumor. That being said, Cancer cell lines ...
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7 votes
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What is "multiple" myeloma?

J. Von Rustizky, a Russian pathologist working in the laboratory of Friedrich von Recklinghausen (1833–1910) in Strassburg in 1873, introduced the term “multiple myeloma.” At autopsy, a 47-year-old ...
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7 votes

What is the first recorded unambiguous case of childhood cancer?

Osteosarcoma is mostly a disease of teenagers and it leaves characteristic changes in the bone. Sometimes archaeologists find such bones. I found this Malignant primary bone tumours were very ...
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7 votes
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Can neurons become cancerous?

Short answer Neuronal tumors are rare, but they do exist. These cancers develop from neuroblast cells, a population of undifferentiated, dividing precursor cells that will eventually fully ...
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7 votes

Can radiation exposure cause cancer later in life even if no traces of radioactive material are present in the body anymore?

Yes it can, because exposure alone can cause mutations in your genes which is usually the main cause of cancer. For example, when we get exposed to UV light for longer periods of time, we can get ...
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