This is another very important property of cancer biology.
But before we move ahead, we recommend that you go through the previous parts of our cancer biology blog series. This will help you understand the complete topic better and be ready for the next parts. Click Here to read –
Generally, when the cells are dividing with multiple lineages the ends of the chromosome in cells which are called telomeres get shortened because of end replication problem. This topic is very well described in molecular biology under the chapter application. So, due to this telomere shortening cells undergo the process of ageing and ultimately die.
However, cancer cells express a very high amount of enzyme which is called telomerase. This enzyme helps in solving the problem of n-replication and prevents the shortening of telomerase. So, cancer cells do not go under the process of ageing as well as senescence. Therefore, they survive and become immortal. This is another mechanism they have learned from the stem cells to survive in the body.
So, now you must be thinking that is there a chance where cancers can be completely treated? Well, we can only say that cancer cells have a long history of evolution because cancer cells are our own cells. They are part of a system which is evolving from thousands of years of millions of years. So, in that case, killing them and solving the mystery of a long evolution with the research of just 50 to 70 years it’s a bit demanding task.
Nonetheless, there are several mechanisms and therapies through which we are capable of expanding the lifetime of the patients. Also, we have been successful in treating some types of cancers. However, cancer cells are fighters and survivors, and they are very good learners from their environment. And they keep changing and mutating themselves and learning new things, which helps them in becoming immortal. And as described in the previous blog, they have the privilege of angiogenesis and metastases. So, all these factors make the job of fighting the cancer cell a lot difficult.
Therefore, we have to work a lot in this field. In fact, we must learn a lot about cancer cells. Especially, about evolution, which makes this subject very interesting. Isn’t it!