Archive for October, 2008

Cancer and stem cells

Wednesday, October 1st, 2008

How to prevent cancer is in our time and age not fully known. We know that smoking causes cancer of the lungs, exposure to the sun can cause skin cancer. A lot of research is going into the matter, but there seems to be a long way to go yet. Nobody in the world know what – substances, emissions, lifestyle, food, stress, chemicals or what – starts it all. At some stage cells start to change – by accident perhaps, but most likely because some factor is involved – turn into cancer cells, grow into cancerous tissue and malignancy.

The treatment of cancer is steadily improving so that the prognosis of survival is good for many types of cancer. We can keep it in check for a long time, even remove it completely.

Cancers have many common features, but can be very different in the details. Research now indicate that some kind of cancer stem cells may be involved in maybe all cancers. You have to aim for these bad stem cells in order to cure the cancer. Drug companies are trying to develop substances that kill cancer stem cells. Stem cells have been found for a number of cancers, and tests on rats have produced some useful results. The challenge now is to transfer the knowledge to humans! Lets hope!

The cure may be on its way, but the mystery of cancer is that we can not find what causes it to start.