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Lecture 3

BIOL 4010 Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Endothelium, Mesothelioma, Sarcoma

Course Code
BIOL 4010

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Epidemiology of cancer:
APC gene mutation (hereditary cancer), causes colon polyps at age 12-14. The benign polyps can
develop to cancer
Breast cancer is mostly sporadic (not hereditary), most cancers are sporadic
Cancer is a genetic disease (about mutations), it can be heritable or sporadic. The cancer is
caused by specific mutations, epigenetics also involved
In most cases its about accumulation of mutation
Age: accumulate mutations with age, especially in stem cells (in adults, that are committed to a
certain direction like hematopoietic stem cells). It is easier to accumulate mutations in these
cells because they are kept forever.
Environment: there are many things that can induce mutations and cause cancer. smoking
(behaviour), causes mutations in cells that encounter toxins from smoke. Smoking also causes
inflammation (cough)
Viruses: have genes that contribute to cancer to satisfy hallmarks in cells. (HPV, Hepatitis B 300
million people have it 30% of them will have severe illness from it including liver cancer
“aggressive cancer”, Hepatitis C “also liver”, Herpes including EBV that is involved in Burkitt’s
lymphoma, herpes type 8 = AID’s = Kaposi sarcoma “a cancer of endothelial cells”). Viruses also
cause inflammation. Hepatitis B: immune system tries to kill infected cells all the time because
the liver can regenerate cells are killed and born, it is a constant battle = chronic. HPV virus
takes about 30 years to cause cancer after infection, during this time there is a chronic
inflammation that helps the cells to gradually turn into cancer
Inflammation: chronic inflammation can be involved in cancer. Ex, Asbestos: causes physical
stress in the lung, a polymer used in buildings causes inflammation in lung if breathed in
Chance: 2/3 of cancers are from chance. Statistically, almost everyone will have cancer, the
longer they live the more likely. There are about 10^14 cells in the body, 10^17 divisions in a life
time, 1-5 mutations per division (10^17 mutations in the body minimum), the human genome
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