When scientists investigate diseases, dysfunctions, and other abnormalities they often learn a great deal about the rules that govern normal life processes. This is especially true in the efforts to understand the origins of cancer - a search that has revealed much about the normal reproduction and development of cells. These revelations and their ...
When scientists investigate diseases, dysfunctions, and other abnormalities they often learn a great deal about the rules that govern normal life processes. This is especially true in the efforts to understand the origins of cancer - a search that has revealed much about the normal reproduction and development of cells. These revelations and their contributions to the fight against cancer are the focus of this elegantly written and illustrated volume. Genes and the Biology of Cancer brings together two of the most distinguished biomedical researchers working today - Harold Varmus and Robert Weinberg. In a book rich with insight and detail, they show how some of the beacons in the study of cancer have illuminated our understanding of normal biological function. What causes the fundamental controls of cellular growth to break down and the unrestrained, unpredictable proliferation characteristic of cancer to begin? Genes and the Biology of Cancer shows how scientists have explored that question by tracing carcinogenesis to its earliest detectable, submicroscopic stages. Drawing on classic and recent research findings, the authors explain how existing predispositions can work with any one of a number of factors (including sunlight, radiation, tobacco, and certain viral infections) to alter the genetic code radically, turning a normal gene into a cancer-causing one. They describe what we now know about the mechanisms of genes that seem to promote cancer (oncogenes) and those that prevent and restrain it (tumor suppressor genes). The authors conclude by looking ahead to possible means of controlling cancer, based upon current advances in research. Genes and the Biology of Cancer is a reportfrom the front lines of one of the most crucial and exciting scientific undertakings of our time. From its exploration of the origins, nature, and mechanisms of carcinogenesis, readers will gain a deeper understanding of natural cellular development - and the dangers that result w
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