Random Errors in DNA Replication Play Major Role in Cancer

by vincentsta on October 30, 2017 - 8:37pm

The main result of this article is that “nearly two-thirds of mutations in human cancers are attributable to random errors that occur naturally in healthy, dividing cells during DNA replication.”  Before this result, the scientific community believed a much bigger part of the DNA mutations were cause heredity or environmental source. According to one of the researcher, the implication of the R (random) mutation was underestimated he believes that their result will increase the attention given to it. The scientists created a method to determine the proportion of cancer mutations that resulted from random mutation. They applied their method to 69 countries, collecting data to find their final result. As the author says, the result will help early detection and early intervention for the 32 cancer types they analysed and will also guide the future researches.

Cancer is a subject that touches everybody, directly or not. It is widespread that cancer may be prevented by a healthy lifestyle; however, this article shows that cancer may be cause by factors that are beyond our control. I believe this new statistic will not directly affects people lifestyle; they maintain a healthy lifestyle for many other reasons than preventing cancer. Actually, this article will have a positive impact: it will helps cancer victims to feel guiltier about their condition. The best example is the case of a young child, knowing that his illness as probably been cause by uncontrollable factors will helps him and his parent to accept his condition and have no remorse.

The article is well developed; it shows clearly the results and the extent of the research. However, scientific concepts would have needed more explanations. For example, the random DNA mutation and also how they associate a cancer to this cause could have been developed with more details.

Phelan, Meaghan. “Random Errors in DNA Replication Play Major Role in Cancer” American Association for the Development of Science, 30 October 2017


I like the subject you came up with vincentsta. I've always been wondering if cancers had a link with heredity. I now know much more about it.

The quality of your english is top-notch! All I can say is keep up the good work because you're doing great.

Thank you William, is good to see you appreciate my text. Is fun to have the opinion of a peer on my writing. Have a great one !

Greetings vincentsta. Your summary was very insightful and you brought up some good points too about the impact of the findings. For example, you wrote, 'it will helps cancer victims to feel guiltier about their condition'. I think you meant to say 'feel less guilty'??? In that case, I would have to agree with you. Cancer in children and young adults who have done nothing 'wrong', so to speak, is the worst case scenario, indeed. I would wonder though about the impact on individuals who have done something 'wrong' and whether these new findings might discourage some from quitting their bad habits. Afterall, the cause of their cancer may have been a random mutation, not the smoking/drinking/inactivity/etc... Anyway, this is a terrible disease and the more we know, the better we can work to find solutions.

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