Causes, Inheritance: Colon cancer, Vogelstein
Professor Vogelstein explains that APC is expressed in all cells, and that we don't know why it only causes cancers when mutated in the colon and in a few other places.
Bert Vogelstein, M.D. is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and the Clayton Professor of Oncology and Pathology at Johns Hopkins University. His research focuses on the identification and characterization of genes that cause colon cancer. This has led to the discovery of the APC gene â€“ the "gatekeeper" in colon cancer development. â€œAPC is expressed in all cells. We don't know why it only causes cancers when mutated in the colon and in a few other places. We can speculate, and it really is speculation, that it does something a little bit different in the colon than in other tissues, but we really don't know that. It's even harder when you talk about mismatch repair genes, because we know exactly what mismatch repair genes â€“ these genes were discovered in bacteria and have been studied in lower organisms for years and they do the same thing on every cell of the planet, and I literally mean every cell of the planet. They repair mistakes that are made as cells synthesize their DNA. Now why those â€“ why a defective mismatch repair system should only lead to cancers in the colon and in the uterus predominantly, no one has the foggiest idea, and I can't give you any answer that I think even makes sense.â€
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- ID: 974
- Source: DNALC.IC
Professor Vogelstein explains that colon cancers provide a good example of a type of tumor in which the genetic steps leading from the normal colon epethelial cell to a cancer, are reasonably well known.
All cancers are genetic, in that cancers are caused by genetic mutations in genes that lead to malignancy.
In Familial Adenomatous Polyposis, a complex cascade of events leads from an initial mutation in a “gatekeeper” gene, eventually to a malignant tumor.
Professor Vogelstein, explains that cancer is in essence a genetic disease. But it's really quite different than all the other genetic diseases that people usually think of when they think about a genetic disease.
Familial colon cancer was long thought to be inherited; however a complete understanding of its causes awaited the discovery that specific genetic mutations confer a large increase in susceptibility to these types of cancers.
Professor Vogelstein explains that the only difference between a benign tumor and a malignant tumor is not the size, it's the ability of the malignant tumor to invade, and get through the tissues.
This section identifies that a cancer gene alters the normal functioning of a protein, and there are three major categories of cancer genes.
Professor Bert Vogelstein, explains that cancer is in essence a genetic disease. It is caused by mutations of genes and there are three types of genes, that contribute to cancer.
Thomas Cech became president of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute on January 1, 2000.
Professor Charles Sawyer explains that CML stands for chronic myeloid leukemia, which is a blood cancer and it is different from many cancers because it starts very slowly and patients when they're first diagnosed don't have many symptoms.