NATS 1670 Study Guide - Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

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Human Health & Disease
Mutated Genes can Induce Cancer
What is Cancer?
- Cancer is in essence a genetic disease
oCaused by mutations of genes
oCancer is usually not inherited from parents to children (non-heritable)
oSomatic mutation
Origin of Mutations
- Spontaneous
oDNA polymerase sometimes makes a mistake in copying
oDNA repair sometimes misses mutations
- Environment
oPhysically induced
Sitting on the beach for long periods of time (UV lights)
Tanning salon
oChemically Induced
Epidemiology of Cancer
- About a mutated genes
- Mutated simply because we get older
oCells during our life can accumulate mutations
oThose mutations can eventually lead to cancer
oMost cancers we get when we are older
- Environment
oPut ourselves in this environment
oWith our behavior
Tobacco and Lung Cancer
- Lung cancer is the leading cause of Cancer death in the United States and Canada
- In 1992, the US Environmental Protection Agency classified tobacco smoke as the
most dangerous cancer-causing agent in humans
- In the United States, nearly 150,000 people die prematurely each year from
tobacco-related cancers and many more from other non cancer diseases (about
- Lung Cancer is almost entirely preventable, since the vast majority of cases are
due to cigarette smoking
- The “smoking gun”
oClassic mechanism of lung carcinogenesis is based on the fact that
carcinogens in the tobacco end up causing DNA mutations
oTobacco smoke consists of approximately 60 known components that have
adverse biological affects
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