February 19, 2019
By: Pathsos Team

New Evidence based causative factors of cancer


Cancer, at its core, is an abnormal growth of cells with genetic structure slightly different from their healthier counterpart- the normal cells. Cancer cells have different set of instructions in their DNA as opposed to the instructions in the healthy cells which come in the way of normal bodily functions and end up in a situation where there is tumor growth inside the body, on the skin and in vital organs.

The factors that lead to this uncontrolled proliferation of cells with defective instructions is due to a variety of causes all taking root in the genetic level. Genetics plays a major role when it comes to cancer causing factors. Although a person with cancer in their family may inherit the cancer gene, it does not confirm any possibility that the person may acquire the disease as there are more than one genetic factors that actually lead to it. It requires the person to inherit one or more genetically mutated genes for the onslaught of cancer. Most of the hereditary cancers, as the term implies, run in the family and show up early on in the person’s life. Two main hereditary cancers are breast cancer and colorectal cancer. Natural hormones, estrogen and progesterone have been known to cause breast cancer in women with long term exposure.

While some are born with genetic mutations strong enough to lead them to cancer, others acquire it due to, as The American Society Of Cancer states, factors like smoking, obesity, radiation exposure, viruses, asbestos, infections like HPV and infections that lead to stomach cancer due to pathogens like Helicobacter pylori, carcinogens, hormones, drugs, alcohol consumption, chronic inflammation in the body and even lack of exercise.

The strongest known risk factor of gastric cancer, the second leading cause to cancer-related death, is H.pylori which upon entering the host, stays within for lifetime. The H.pylori has co-existed within the human body for tens of thousands of years and has developed adaptation in most acidic conditioned prevalent in the stomach. Recent studies have shown that anti-H.pyroli therapy is effective for gastric cancer prevention as long term carriage of the bacterium proves to be causative of gastric cancer and lymphoma.

Lifestyle factors take up a high proportion of cancer causes and the evidence provided by the New South Wales Government shows that chronic drinking of alcohol is the reason to 2.8% of all estimated cancer causes in New South Wales and that smoking causes lung cancer in 90% of men and 65 %of women. Diets which lack fruits, vegetables, grains and other high-fiber foods have been recorded to lead to colon cancer in the National Cancer Institute journal on their review of epidemiologic evidence on colon cancer.

Other risk factors include low immunity due to organ transplant where immune suppressants are taken in order to accept the organ, rare medical syndromes and due to HIV which completely leaves the person susceptible to all kinds of major and minor diseases and illnesses.

Exposure to steroids, oral contraceptives, tobacco products (smoke, smokeless), MOPP used as a palliative for lung and breast cancer leads to a risk of developing a herpes zoster infection later after treatment, chlornaphazine which leads to bladder cancer , diethylstilbestrol which is an estrogen medication, and other medications.

The Lancet journal states the following risk factors, overweight, obesity, low fruit and vegetable intake, unsafe sex, use of contaminated syringes, smoking , alcohol use, physical inactivity, indoor smoke and solid fuel use, all leading majorly to lung, colorectal and breast cancers. The theoretical minimum risk exposure are down to zero for some of factors like alcohol use, unsafe sex, indoor smoke, use of solid fuel, contaminated syringes and smoking.

 “A proportion of HPV infections that lead to cervix uteri cancer are transmitted through routes other than sexual contact.” – The Lancet

What is interesting to see is that there is no convincing scientific evidence that mobilephone towers cause cancer as they produce non-ionising radiations which aren’t powerful enough to damage DNA and nor do e-cigarettes prove to be causative factor for cancer.

The World Health Organization has stated that exposure to high levels of toxic inorganic arsenic leads to skin cancer after about five years of continuous exposure though drinking water and food. The current recommended limit of arsenic in drinking-water is 10 μg/L although the prescribed value varies with provisions.

The simplest risk factors are age with the possibility of increase of cancer incidence in older ages, negative lifestyle choices like smoking, consumption of carcinogenic substance found in food products and alcohol use, overexposure to sun, physical inactivity and improper diet. Even though the cancer causing risk factors are due to both voluntary and involuntary exposures and cancer mortality can be reduced by seeking information, support and cancer health care by getting to know the true verified causes of cancer and not relying on myths about it.