Dbq Cancer Analysis

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In the US, cancer is the second major cause of death. Cancer is the uncontrolled division of somatic cells caused by defective cancer cells. Usually, when cells divide, they begin to form a layer. Normal cells will experience contact inhibition, where cells can cease to replicate once there is no more space for it to inhabit. However, cancer cells cannot control their division. As a result, these cells form a clump that is commonly referred to as a tumor (neoplasm), especially when the immune system is malfunctioning. Tumors can be benign, harmless and easily taken out or malignant. Malignant tumors block tissues and organs from functioning with each other. Once cancer cells become metastasized, they break away from a host tumor. These free-floating…show more content…
Three main factors to this trend in cancer is frequent exposure to environmental carcinogens, inheritance of cancer genes and having a weak immune system. For instance, “ The results of the research indicate that DNA damage does occur in workers exposed to low concentrations of styrene.” (Doc. D) Since workers are frequently being exposed to carcinogens their cells are vulnerable to damage. A majority of these workers that come in contact with these carcinogens work in construction or agricultural fields. Styrene is most commonly found in an industrial workplace. Styrene can alter the DNA sequence. However, by limiting exposure to cancer causing chemicals, longevity of life can be preserved. Also, in Document B, it states, “Much cancer is caused by ‘environmental factors’ broadly defined to include food,drink, and habits such as smoking tobacco and basking in the sun.” The chance of being diagnosed with cancer depends on the extent of exposure to a carcinogen. Secondly, many individuals are susceptible to getting cancer due to their genetics. According to Document H, “Researchers found that some women have a genetic predisposition to use the pathway that creates the bad metabolite (16-alpha-hydroxyestrone). These women have a greatly increased risk for breast cancer.” If a cell in the reproductive system becomes mutated, the mutation could possibly pass to the next generation. If women with the “bad metabolite” decide to reproduce, their offspring, if female, is more likely to have the bad metabolite.The third factor contributing to this trend is weakness within the immune system due to old age. As an individual ages, their immune system may function improperly. (Doc. G) With age comes a variety of diseases, which can cause the immune system to react sporadically.T cells are produced to attack the antigens of tumors and B cells are produced to make antibodies that are specific to the antigens of a tumor. An older individual’s immune system could react at a slower

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