Introduction to the Cellular and Molecular Biology of Cancer by Peter Selby, Peter J. Selby (Editor) Margaret A. Knowles

By Peter Selby, Peter J. Selby (Editor) Margaret A. Knowles

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2 Malignant tumours Malignant tumours show two characteristic features; cellular abnormalities (dyskaryosis), sometimes slight, and invasion of surrounding tissues. When both features are present, diagnosis is easy. The standard cellular criteria include a local increase in cell number, loss of the normal regular arrangement of cells, variation in cell shape and size, increase in nuclear size and density of staining (both of which often reflect an increase in DNA content), an increase in mitotic activity (increased cell division), and the presence of abnormal mitoses and chromosomes.

1989) precludes the acquisition by a single cell of multiple mutations simultaneously. Even when large carcinogen doses are applied, the large number of potentially lethal mutations sustained at the same time as any set of mutations with potential advantage is likely to lead to cell death rather than instant tumorigenicity. Thus the expectation is that events occur singly and in a particular sequence in each cancer. This is frequently referred to as a genetic pathway or progression pathway and for several cancer types attempts have been made to map the pathway in genetic terms.

25 25 25 29 29 33 36 38 39 40 41 41 41 42 43 an increase in the incidence of certain forms of cancer. 1 shows the numbers of cancers diagnosed and the number of deaths from cancer for the most common cancer sites worldwide. 1 m), and accounts for approximately 12% of all cancers diagnosed (17% of all cancers in men and 7% in women). Breast cancer is the second-most common cancer diagnosed worldwide, with just over 1 million incident cases per year, and accounts for 10% of all cancers.

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