When does cancer occur? How do people get cancer?

When does cancer occur? How do people get cancer?

Cancer occurs when normal cells multiply (proliferate) fast than normal, lose their ability to differentiate (remain immature), and have diminished apoptosis (cell death) rates. Cancer cells are primitive in that they haven't grown up and become skin, or bone, or liver, or uterus--in medical terms they are "undifferentiated". At the stage where they would normally keep developing into a specific type of cell, they divide instead into another primitive cell. This is because something in the genetics of the cells that gives instructions on how to differentiate, or mature, is broken; communications have become faulty. This miscommunication is usually caused by damage or some sort of toxic environment within the cell sufficient to affect the cell's chromosomes (genes). Such damge can result from estrogens, viruses, radiation, genetic predisposition, exposure to toxic chemicals, or injury to the tissue.

“What Your Doctor May NOT Tell You About Breast Cancer: How Hormone Balance Can Help Save Your Life”, John R. Lee, MD; David Zava, PhD; Virginia Hopkins

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