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What is "Cancer" and how to avoid this disease
What is "Cancer" and how to avoid this disease

Cancer is a disease that lies in wait for a person inside his own body. No one is immune from it, and yet medicine from year to year defeats cancer, inventing new ways to fight cancer. Today we will tell you about what cancer is, how to prevent its development and how scientists around the world are looking for a panacea for this "plague of the XXI century."

What is cancer and how to prevent its development: the scourge of the XXI century

When we hear the word "disease", then first of all microorganisms or viruses that affect the human body come to mind. For them, a person is both a food base and a dwelling: some settle in mucous membranes, others spread throughout the body with blood flow, and still others “break open” body cells in order to produce their own offspring. With the help of drugs and preventive measures, people have been fighting them for many centuries, and are constantly inventing more and more new ways to protect themselves from outside threats.

However, the most terrible threat, as is usually the case, lies in wait for him from within.

What is cancer

Crayfishis a disease caused by mutating cells in the body. Until now, there is no 100% way to predict where, when and how a cellular program will fail. Medicine knows only factors that increase the likelihood of mutation (they are called "carcinogenic", That is," causing tumors "): radiation exposure, exposure to toxic substances, a general decrease in immunity, etc., but even they do not lead to the development of cancer with one hundred percent probability.

The opposite is also true: no modern therapy can absolutely protect a person from the risk of tumors.


Tumor, or carcinoma, occurs when the somatic (non-reproductive) cell of the body begins to divide and grow chaotically. Usually, every cell in the body lives on a well-defined schedule known as cell cycle… When its program is completed, the cell stops dividing and dies, and the cleaning cells (phagocytes) destroy its traces so that inflammation does not arise in the tissues due to organic debris.

The cell “learns” that its days are numbered thanks to telomeres - tiny pieces of DNA at the ends of chromosomes. When a cell divides, part of the telomere dies, and when the entire telomere is used up, division stops. This phenomenon was discovered in the 60s of the last century by Leonard Hayflick, after whom it was named. The Hayflick limit occurs at about 50 divisions.

Why would a cell die at all? This is due to the fact that in the process of division, microscopic mutations inevitably arise - both minor and very harmful. It is because of them that our body is aging: at some point, there are too many mutations in it, and the cellular program fails one after another. They arise mainly due to the aggressive effects of the environment, but even a person raised in complete isolation will not live forever - nature has taken care of this.

Tumors and their types

Carcinomas are divided into benign and malignant… Both are dangerous to the body, but malignant tumors pose the greatest threat. They consist of malignant (malignant) cells - they have almost completely lost the features specific to their "native" tissue, and have the ability to non-stop and uncontrolled reproduction.

In addition, they give rise to metastases: mutant cells that appear in one tumor break away from it and spread throughout the body with the blood flow.Having anchored in a new place, the cell continues to parasitize there, which leads to a deterioration in the health of the host.

Malignant tumor

It would seem, what is wrong with cells dividing somewhere inside us? In the end, this happens all the time, and it is through this process that our body maintains its vital functions. But there are two very important points. First, the mutant cell ceases to fulfill its role, gradually displacing healthy tissue cells. Due to the fact that a part of the body ceases to fulfill its role, its general work is expected to be disrupted.

In addition, the cancer cell becomes a real parasite: she, not knowing and not wanting to die, divides more and more, sucking all its resources from the body. Over time, a person weakens, and the pains that follow him make life more difficult. Against this background, immunity also sharply weakens, and a person becomes vulnerable to microorganisms from the outside.

Why is cancer so hard to cure?

The main and most important problem of cancer healing is that the human immune system simply does not recognize mutant cells as something foreign. As a result, the organism does not react in any way to parasites inside it and dies, "not understanding" what is the matter. But the drugs that doctors inject into the body and which must destroy diseased cells are perceived by our immunity as aggressors: it in every possible way prevents them from reaching their goal, and tries to isolate and remove all active substances from the body.

In order to destroy the tumor, scientists resort to cunning and truly unusual methods. Some launch metal nanoparticles into the body: they easily pass through the cell membranes, and when they find themselves in a tumor, they are heated by radio radiation, as a result of which the tumor quickly dies off with little or no harm to the body. Others infect a person with "sterile" salmonella: they easily pass through almost any membrane, and a piece of medicine is attached to each. When they are in the carcinoma, the medication detaches and takes effect. As a result, a person is infected with harmless salmonella, but there is no need to fear for his life.

The process of transition of a tumor to a malignant

Familiar to everyone from movies and TV shows like Breaking Bad chemotherapy - This is an effective, but very dangerous way for the body to destroy cancer. After exposure to strong bioactive chemicals, the entire body suffers, and often people who have undergone chemotherapy and have defeated cancer remain disabled for life.

Until recently, this was one of the most effective ways to fight cancer: yes, a carcinoma can simply be excised, but not all tumors are operable, and there are no guarantees that the tumor will not metastasize.


Cancer is the body's response to mutagens, both external and internal. You can protect yourself as much as possible by avoiding contact with carcinogens: nicotine, alcohol, air saturated with chemicals, unhealthy food and an abundance of pathogenic microbes - these are the most dangerous of them. The more the organism is tempered, the better it resists external diseases, but its own cells, alas, are often much more dangerous.

Fortunately, every year medicine is inventing more and more effective and safer ways to fight cancer, so there is a chance that cancer prevention in the future will not be more difficult than preventing the common cold.

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