Useless is not the same as harmful, unfortunately. But, if things turn out as the researchers say, they now know what to target.
The most likely explanation is that death is a process of shutting down, rather than an instant when everything stops. The genes to grow a spinal column, for example, resurfaced but maybe they had been suppressed because the deceased already had one. Still much to learn but that’s a good hypothesis to test.
The main thing we’re learning these days is that epigenetics is much more important than we used to think. Which means that purely Darwinian evolution must be much less so.
It’s an interesting theory but the obvious problem is that transmissible cancers are, as the authors admit, rare. They may always have been rare, relative, say, to predation or extinction—whether sex was part of a life form’s organization or not.
“Natural killer cells” roam the body, demanding that other cells produce evidence of good faith—otherwise, they kill them: In general, two things must happen before an NK cell attacks a target cell: (1) It must receive an activating signal from a body cell that says, “Kill me!” (2) It must not receive an inhibitory signal […]
Why this matters: Cancer cells avoid destruction by inhibiting a process (which is called necroptosis). And necroptosis happening when it shouldn’t “is linked to the damage from multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease and tissue injury from blood flow loss.” Targeting these processes could be an avenue for treatment.
Some of us remember the spate of sciencey articles that appeared in women’s mags on the cancer-prone personality. It sounded wrong at the time. Many of us knew so many people who had died of cancer who didn’t fit the type at all.
They can say that “thinks” is “just an image” if they like. But at what point does it become clear that somehow something must have been doing something that we would normally describe as thinking or else this wouldn’t be happening.
Time will tell if their treatment works but note that actual numerical limits are suggested here on the number of mutations that can happen randomly at the same time. Mathematics, not religion, is the enemy of Darwinism.
From ScienceDaily: A kill code is embedded in every cell in the body whose function may be to cause the self-destruction of cells that become cancerous, reports a new Northwestern Medicine study. As soon as the cell’s inner bodyguards sense it is mutating into cancer, they punch in the kill code to extinguish the mutating […]
We thought “purposeful efficiency” was enough to get a researcher fired, but read on: From ScienceDaily: The steps cells take in response to challenges are more complex than previously thought, finds new research published in the journal eLIFE. The study investigates a system relevant to cancer, viral infection, and diabetes as well as Parkinson’s and […]
Sloan Kettering molecular biologist argues that this may not be semantics. What if that’s what they are actually doing, in effect? One wonders, how would it affect cancer treatment? Abstract: Living organisms must maintain proper regulation including defense and healing. Life-threatening problems may be caused by pathogens or an organism’s own cells’ deficiency or hyperactivity, in […]
From David Nguyen: Why Tumor Biologists Should Never See Randomness But Only Degrees of Disorder See also: What is Randomness? Part 1, with David Nguyen