Cancer cell


The cell of a cancerous tumor differs from a healthy one in that it ceases to react to many signals controlling the processes of formation, growth and death. But where does the cancer cell come from? To answer this question you need to know the characteristics of healthy cells:

  • they are reproduced only when necessary;
  • react to "messages" of the body;
  • keep together in the right part of the body;
  • normal cells tend to self-destruct if they are damaged or too old;
  • they are ready to fully ripen.

Cancer Cells: Features and Differences from a Healthy

Cancer cells originate in tissues, just like normal cells. But in the process of growth and division, they are increasingly different:

1.Cancer cells do not stop growing and divide.

This means that they constantly double, increasing in size and forming a lump (swelling). Ultimately, oncological education consists of billions of copies of the original cancer cell.

So external tumors make themselves felt. A person can feel them to the touch. However, not every seal necessarily contains malignant tissue. The process can be benign.

Some oncological formations do not form tumors, as, for example, leukemia, but they accumulate in the blood.

2.Cancer cell ignores signal from other cells.

Unlike normal cells, cancerous cancer cells do not perceive messages about changes in the internal structure, deliberately canceling the signaling.

3.Cancer cells do not stick together.

They have the property of losing the connection between the molecules that hold the cells in the right place. Thus, they spread to other parts of the body and the body system.

4.The cancer cell does not restore itself and is not prone to destruction (apoptosis).


If cellular genes are damaged, they must correct errors themselves. Usually, cell repair depends on the p53 protein. If the fault can not be remedied, a certain cell dies. Many types of cancer cells have a faulty version of p53. In this regard, they are not able to manage life cycles. Scientists call this feature immortality.

5.Impossibility of maturation.

Because of the active growth and division, the cells that cause cancer can not ripen completely, so they are not ready to perform any functions in the body. For the same reason, they are more immature and contain many genetic errors.

6.Cancer cells have different forms and differ significantly from healthy ones.

They have unequal size and shape.

Attention: Analyzes for cancer cells

Growth of cancer cells

Cells become malignant after mutations that accumulate in the genes that control the proliferation of cells. According to researchers, most cancer cells have 60 or more mutations. This is due to the fact that a healthy cell reproduces 2 identical ones, those in turn are divided into 4, etc.

In a malignant process, each subsequent cancer cell contains a defective gene that is incapable of meeting all the requirements of the body's system. It is believed that before it is finally transformed into a cancerous cell, the cell undergoes a number of transformations. Usually there are at least 6 such mutations. If deformed cells are not destroyed by the natural process of destruction, they have the potential to turn into malignant ones.

In the process of growth, the tumor is increasingly moving away from the blood vessels. In this regard, malignant formation receives less oxygen and nutrients for existence. Without blood supply, the tumor can not grow larger than the pinhead. Therefore, in order to survive, the cancer cell sends signals that promote the growth of new blood vessels. This process is called "angiogenesis".

It is important to know: The division of cancer cells: how does it happen?

Conversion of normal cells into cancerous cells

It should be understood that healthy cells do not become malignant in one day. This is a very long and gradual process that damages three to seven hundred genes. Each subsequent cell transformation threatens a high level of mutations. Over timecancer cellfinds such features:

  1. Avoids destruction from the defenses of the body and does not lend itself to normal immunity.
  2. It becomes immortal. After each division of the chromosome, the normal cells are shortened. So the cell wears out, dies and is replaced by the next one. Cancer cells deceive this system, keeping their long chromosomes, which allows them to live forever.
  3. It develops its own blood supply, which allows it to invade other parts and systems of the body.

Be sure to read: How cryosurgery kills cancer cells and destroys tumors

Types of Cancer Genes

Scientists have discovered 3 main classes of genes responsible for the occurrence and development of malignant process. People who have a certain kind of such gene compounds are more likely to form a malignant process in some parts of the body (for example, in the cervix, prostate, etc.).

Cells that cause cancer are defined as:

Oncogenes- deformed versions of conventional compounds called proto-oncogenes. They contribute to the development of cancerous tumor cells, in various ways damaging the functioning of healthy tissues.

All people have 2 copies of the same gene inherited from their parents. When one of these copies of the proto-oncogenes is damaged by a defect, there is a risk of a malignant disease.

Suppressor genesoncological education. They usually do not allow the malignant process to develop, helping to stop the growth of tumors and atypical cells and cause their death. But when a mutation occurs in the suppressor genes, the onco-cell gets out of their control, continuing to divide. This process is already difficult to stop naturally.

Genes of DNA repairare responsible for repairing damaged genes. They fix errors when copying DNA. Unfortunately, malignant process can damage this kind of cells, which causes the growth of atypical tissues.

At this time, new research is being carried out and innovative methods are being developed, which, perhaps, will affect all the resourcescancer cell.