Elephants rarely die of Cancer and until now researchers weren’t sure why the large mammals were able to keep the disease at bay. One reason researchers recently came up with is that Elephants are born with twenty copies of a major Cancer fighting gene called TP53. This gene is a tumor suppressor that attacks cells when they divide. In contrast, humans are born with only two copies of the gene (one from each parent). This find is significant because 5% of elephants end up with Cancer compared to the 11% to 25% of humans that end up with the disease. The hope is that this new find will help provide new and more effective ways to fight the deadly disease.
Posted in: Health– October 14, 2015