Anonymous asked in 社會與文化語言 · 1 decade ago


The main reason to pursue this next ambitious venture in large-scale biology with great urgency is cancer's terrible toll on humankind. Every day more than 1,500 Americans die from cancer--about one person every minute. As the U.S. population ages, this rate is expected to rise significantly in the years ahead unless investigators find ways to accelerate the identification of new vulnerabilities within cancerous cells and develop novel strategies for attacking those targets.

Still, however noble the intent, it takes more than a desire to ease human suffering to justify a research enterprise of this magnitude. When applied to the 50 most common types of cancer, this effort could ultimately prove to be the equivalent of more than 10,000 Human Genome Projects in terms of the sheer volume of DNA to be sequenced. The dream must therefore be matched with an ambitious but realistic assessment of the emerging scientific opportunities for waging a smarter war against cancer.

A Disease of Genes

THE IDEA THAT ALTERATIONS to the cellular genome lie at the heart of all forms of cancer is not new. Since the first identification in 1981 of a cancer-promoting version of a human gene, known as an oncogene, scientists have increasingly come to understand that cancer is caused primarily by mutations in specific genes. The damage can be incurred through exposure to toxins or radiation, by faulty DNA repair processes or by errors that occur when DNA is copied prior to cell division. In relatively rare cases, a cancer-predisposing mutation is carried within a gene variant inherited from one's ancestors.

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  • 1 decade ago
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    主張改建,以適應細胞基因組的核心所在,所有形式的癌症並不新鮮。自從第一次鑑定,在1981年的一個毒瘤促版本的人類基因被稱為癌基因,科學家們越來越認識到癌症是造成的,主要由基因突變的特殊基因。該損害可招致通過接觸毒素或輻射,是由錯誤的DNA損傷修復過程或錯誤發生時, DNA是複製之前細胞分裂。在較為罕見的情況下,癌症的誘發突變是進行內部的一個基因變異繼承自一個人的祖先。

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