Why Cancer May Never Be Eradicated
New research from Kiel University explains why cancers can never be defeated.
According to Professor Thomas Bosch and his colleagues, "Cancer is as old as multi-cellular life on earth and will probably never be completely eradicated", writes Nature World News.
Britain's top scientist Sir Paul Nurse, president of the Royal Society, has earlier stated that cancer is a generic term used to describe several conditions where cells in the body go awry.
According to this, there can never be a single cure for cancer.
In the present study, researchers tracked cancer's evolution, revealing three things.
Firstly, cancer is as old as multicellular organisms; secondly, simple ancient creatures too develop cancers and thirdly, tumor cells are invasive, writes Nature World News.
Bosch and colleagues have been trying to find the root of cancer for several years, writes Nature World News.
The team used bio-informational methods and databases to understand how cancer originated.
Tumors develop due to a set of genes called the "cancer genes."
The new study showed that ancient multi-cellular organisms already had most of the cancer genes that are known to cause cancer in humans.
The second part of the research was based on Hydra, a phylogenetic old polyp. Researchers found that even this primitive creature could develop cancer.
The study suggests that cancers are not modern, but could be as old as life itself.
The research also found that cancer cells can invade healthy tissue and spread like a tumor.
"The invasive characteristic of cancer cells is also an evolutionary old feature," Bosch said in a statement.
While, cancer might never be defeated, but knowing the enemy does help win the battles, researchers said in a statement.
"Our research reconfirms that primordial animals such as Hydra polyps provide an enormous amount of information to help us understand such complex problems as 'cancer'. Our study also makes it unlikely that the 'War on Cancer' proclaimed in the 1970s can ever be won. However, knowing your enemy from its origin is the best way to fight it, and win many battles," Bosch said in a statement.
The study is published in the journal Nature Communications.