Question Regina Science

Stages of cancer pathology

What are the main stages of cancer pathology?

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Answer Internal Staff

The human body is in a constant state of cellular growth. Cancer occurs when the Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) within a cell becomes damaged. Normally, the immune system is able to identify defected cells and destroy them before they can replicate and divide. However, if the immune system fails to acknowledge the existence of a mutated cell line, it can divide uncontrollably resulting in the formation of tumours. Some tumours stop replicating and are termed benign and are generally non-life threatening. However malignant tumours, are those which divide uncontrollably. Focused in one area, they are known as ‘carcinoma in situ’ and can eventually create their own blood vessels. The addition of new blood vessels supplies the dividing cells with oxygen, glucose and survival hormones, which promotes continued growth. The presence of a blood vessel in close proximity can also cause the diving cells to enter the bloodstream or lymphatic system and move to other areas of the body where the cancer cells continue to grow, this is known as an invasive cancer.