preview

GENETICS OF CANCER

Better Essays
GENETICS OF CANCER
(Breast and Cervical cancer)
• BREAST CANCER:
Breast cancer is a cancer that arises in the tissues of the breasts. It is a leading cause of death in women in the western countries. A woman’s chance of developing breast cancer increases much more if the cancer runs in her family i.e., it is hereditary and hence can be inherited from our family. Breast cancer can also develop in males, but is very rare. About 1% breast cancer develop in males.
The two main genes that are mainly responsible for this catastrophe are “BRCA1 (Breast cancer 1)” and “BRCA2 (Breast cancer 2)”. These genes produce “tumor suppressor” proteins whose normal function is to inhibit cell division and repair the damaged DNA, hence keeping the cell’s genetic material healthy and stable. Hence it can be seen that the product of these two genes actually helps to keep our DNA stable.
Problem arises when these genes become altered i.e, it undergoes mutation. Mutation refers to the change in the DNA sequence which could result in a production of a protein of altered structure and function. BRCA mutations act in a dominant manner, which means that even though a person receives a single mutated version of the gene (the other copy being normal), they have a big chance of acquiring a second mutation and hence predispose them to breast cancer. (dominant expression of cancer)

Because they are inherited from the parents, they are known as “hereditary” or “germline mutations”, rather than “acquired” or “somatic mutation”. A harmful BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation can be inherited from a person’s mother or father.
Apart from these two main genes, there are also other genes which are responsible for predisposition to breast cancer, but not so much as BRCA1 and BRCA2...

... middle of paper ...

...s and hence would not be able to evade the immune system.
• CONCLUSION :
Cancer is still a major threat to humanity. Every year it causes a large number of deaths. Breast cancer and cervical cancer are a leading cause of death in women in the western countries. Drugs prescribed for both of them are now being challenged. So if we could understand the genetics of both these cancers and understand the pattern of inheritance of the mutated allele’s one could prevent these cancers (especially breast cancer) before its onset. Understanding the functions of lncRNA is important for knowing and treating cervical cancer. Also, finding out the faulty genes in both the types of cancers could be helpful for knowing the genetic pathway. Taking all this together, cancer genetics is an important and will be a necessary tool in the future for treating and curing all types of cancers.
Get Access