Chapter 8 Textbook Review
Cancer: Abnormal, uncontrolled cellular multiplication. Every case of cancer begins as a
change in a cell that allows it to grow and divide when it should not. Symptoms may be a
lump/tumour or persistent cough or unexplained bleeding and in the case of leukemia, changes
in the blood
Tumour: A mass of tissue that serves no physiological purpose; also called a neoplasm. Most
cancers take the form of tumours. May be felt as a lump or seen through an X-ray or biopsy and
then diagnosed as cancer
Benign Tumour: A mass of tissue that is not cancerous. It is enclosed in a membrane that
prevents them from penetrating neighbouring tissues. They are dangerous only if their physical
presence interferes with body functions
Malignant Tumour: A mass of tissue that is cancerous and capable of spreading. Can invade
surrounding structures and can produce invasive tumours in almost any part of the body if it
spreads (via the blood and lymphatic circulation)
Lymphatic System: A network of vessels that returns proteins, lipids, and other substances
from fluid in the tissues to the circulatory system.
Biopsy: The removal and examination of a small piece of body tissue; a needle biopsy uses a
needle to remove a small sample, but some biopsies require surgery.
Metastasis: The spread of cancer cells from one part of the body to another. Cancer cells do
not stick to each other as strongly as normal cells do so they do not stay at the site of the
primary tumour (cancer’s original location). New tumours are called secondary tumours,
- Metastasizing: tumour cells recruiting normal cells, modifying them, then using them
to travel to different parts of the body and preparing them to receive travelling cancer
cells (allowing them to gather at a new site and resume replicating)
- Early cancer detection is critical. To control cancer all cancer cells must be removed
and once it has entered the lymphatic system it is very difficult to remove
Staging: A method of classifying the progress or extent of a cancer in a person.
0 Early cancer, present only in the layer of cells where it originated
I, II, III More extensive cancer, with higher numbers indicating greater tumour size and/or the degree to which the
cancer has spread to nearby lymph nodes or organs adjacent to the primary tumour.
IV Advanced cancer that has spread to another organ
Carcinoma: Cancer that originates in epithelial tissue (skin, glands, and lining of internal
Epithelia: Tissue that covers a surface or lines a tube or cavity of the body, enclosing and
protecting other parts of the body.
Sarcoma: Cancer arising from bone, cartilage, or striated muscle.
Lymphoma: A tumour originating from lymphatic tissue.
Leukemia: Cancer of the blood or the blood-forming cells.
Bone Marrow: Soft vascular tissue in the interior cavities of bones that produces blood cells. Oncologist: A medical specialist in the study of tumours.
Hematologist: A medical specialist in the study of blood disorders, including cancers, such as
leukemia and lymphoma.
Chemotherapy: The treatment of cancer with chemicals that selectively destroy cancerous
Remission: A period during the course of cancer in which there are no symptoms or other
evidence of disease.
Polyp: A small, usually harmless, mass of tissue that projects from the inner surface of a
mucous membrane, such as the colon or rectum.
Mammogram: Low-dose X-ray of the breasts used to check for early signs of breast cancer.
Ultrasonography: An imaging method in which sound waves are bounced off body structures
to create an image on a TV monitor; also called ultrasound.
Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) Blood Test: A diagnostic test for prostate cancer that
measures blood levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA).
Incontinence: The inability to control the flow of urine.
Pap Test: A scraping of cells from the cervix for examination under a microscope to detect
Melanoma: A malignant tumour of the skin that arises from pigmented cells, usually a mole.
Ultraviolet (UV) Radiation: Light rays of a specific wavelength emitted by the sun; most UV
rays are blocked by the ozone layer in the upper atmosphere.
Basal Cell Carcinoma: Cancer of the deepest layers of the skin.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma: Cancer of the surface layers of the skin.
Sunscreen: A substance used to protect the skin from UV rays; usually applied as an ointment
or a cream.
Chromosomes: The threadlike bodies in a cell nucleus that contain molecules of DNA; most
human cells contain 23 pairs of chromosomes.
DNA: Deoxyribonucleic acid, a chemical substance that carries genetic information.
- Gene: a smaller unit of DNA made up of specific sequences of nucleotide bases
Mutation: any change in the normal makeup of a gene; can be inherited or new; a mutated
gene no longer has the proper code for producing its protein
Mutagen: Any environmental factor that can cause mutation, such as radiation and atmospheric
Oncogene: A gene involved in the transformation of a normal cell into a cancer cell. Can be
inherited or a mutation can occur after birth from external factors to produce a oncogene
Cancer Promoters (Initiators): cause mutational changes in DNA (i.e UV radiation). Other
factors that increase cancer risks are alcohol, tobacco, fried foods, fibre, fruit and vegetables, fat and meat, obesity and inactivity, carcinogens in the environment (microbes, chemicals,
Tumour Suppressor Gene: A type of oncogene that normally functions to restrain cellular
Anticarcinogen: An agent that destroys or otherwise blocks the action of carcinogens.
Carotenoid: Any of a group of yellow-to-red plant pigments that can be converted to vitamin A
by the liver; many act as antioxidants or have other anti-cancer effects. The carotenoids include
beta-carotene, lutein, lycopene, and zeaxanthin.
Induction Chemotherapy: The use of chemotherapy before surgery to shrink a cancerous
tumour and prevent metastasis; sometimes eliminates the need for radical surgery.
Gene Therapy: The manipulation of gene express