Posted: February 16th, 2022
Discussion Topic 1:
In your own words, explain how cancer cells differ from normal cells in regard to the following:
Telomeres, which are products of telomerase enzyme
Normal cells show progressive shortening of telomere with aging and the enzyme is regulated to prevent continuous expressions. Hence, normal cells are enzyme competent and silent whereas cancer cells express the enzymes universally.
Cell to cell communication
Normal cells interact with various cells unlike the cancer cells. Normal cells also react to signals from neighboring cells unlike cancer cells.
Cancerous cells neither undergo apoptosis nor repair unlike normal cells, which can either die or be repaired.
Molecular controls of the cell cycle (include Cdk and Cdk/cyclin complexes, p53 gene/protein, Rb gene/protein in response)
The p53 protein checks whether the damaged cell can be repaired or would die. When the protein is inactive or abnormal then damaged or old cells reproduce. The gene is a tumor suppressive because of coding proteins which suppress cells’ growth.
Discussion Topic 2:
In your own words, explain each of the hallmarks of cancer below:
Immortality causes reemergence, metastatic spread, and development of tumors. Normal cells become old and eventually die. Telomeres, which are the chromosomes’ ends, monitor cellular aging. Telomeres shortens, eventually being unable to safeguard chromosomes leading to cell death (Cowan, 2018). Cancer is immortal because of reversing the shortening process. Cancerous cells, instead, enable telomeres to lengthen.
Produce go signals
Normal cells usually wait for the signal before dividing while cancer cells normally produce their signals and divide without waiting for approval from the signal
Override stop signals
Normal cells usually produce the signal while cancer cells tend to override such signals.
Resist cell death
Normal cells experience self-destruction whereas cancer cells usually do not experience apoptosis.
Angiogenesis and how it relates to metastasis (more details about these in upcoming week).
Cancer cell progressively growth through production of blood vessels via process termed as angiogenesis.
Which of these hallmarks of cancer do you think would be the ultimate targets for cancer therapy and why?
The angiogenesis phase is an ultimate target for cancer therapy. The cells embody features which allow survival beyond life span, hence proliferate abnormally. Therapy associated with the use of cytotoxic drugs, usually kills cells which have high rates of regeneration and proliferation (Feitelson, et al., 2015). The type of therapy affects nun tumor and proliferating cells situated in gastrointestinal tract, hair, and skin.
Cowan, C. (2018, June 28). How do Cancer Cells Achieve Immortality? Retrieved from The Jackson Laboratory: https://www.jax.org/news-and-insights/2018/june/how-do-cancer-cells-achieve-immortality
Feitelson, M., Arzumanyan, A., Blain, S., Holcombe, R., Mahajna, J., & Marino, M. (2015). Sustained proliferation in cancer: Mechanisms and novel therapeutic targets. Seminars in Cancer Biology, 35. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1044579X15000140#:~:text=Cancer%20hallmarks%201.%20The%20centrality%20of%20cell%20proliferation,a%20high%20basal%20level%20of%20proliferation%20and%20regeneration.
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