Jul 20, 2019 | Updated: 08:54 AM EDT

DNA Mutations, Genome Errors Account For 66 Percent Of Cancer Risks: Unhealthy Lifestyle, Just Secondary Trigger

Mar 27, 2017 01:11 AM EDT

Scientists examined 32 different kinds of cancer from the human body and found out that 66 percent of these cancers can be triggered by erroneous DNA mutations.
(Photo : Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

DNA mutations, coupled with millions of times of genome splits during a lifetime accounts for 66 percent of new cancers. Cells are copying themselves over and over again during the course of life. However, this also escalates the risks of errors and cancer risks mutations in the DNA.

While unhealthy lifestyle, pollution, and other factors can be blamed for increased risk of developing cancer, nothing beats the erroneous DNA mutations. According to geneticist Bert Vogelstein, there are three random mutations that occur each time a cell breaks up. To limit the damage, the DNA itself will trigger a repair mechanism where humans are lucky for most of the time. But what if an error kicks in since not all mutations happen in the genome that is active anyway?

The question itself stirs controversy among researchers who thinks the other way around. Some factions have been campaigning the idea that DNA mutations and subsequent cancer can be caused by pollution and unhealthy lifestyle. However, Vogelstein's team explained that their theory is not lambasting the bedrock belief that was established before. In fact, DNA mutation through genome errors is complimentary, according to The Los Angeles Times.

While this new idea is a complete paradigm shift to the random cancer development theory, Vogelstein hopes that the contradicting conclusions may still fit with each other. To give a concrete example, his team thoroughly examined 32 different kinds of cancer from the human body, both internal and at the surface. They found out that 66 percent of these cancers can be triggered by erroneous DNA mutation transcriptions, NPR reported.

Vogelstein also argues that even if a perfect human being is stripped of all genetic cancer risks genes, there is still a high tendency that his stem cells may generate cancer-causing DNA mutations. The possibility is unaffected even if the person is living in a non-smoking and pollution-free environment, he added. Finally, Vogelstein capped his argument that everything boils down to "evolution."

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