The causes of cancer
Art & Science Previous     Next

The causes of cancer

Paul Scotting Associate professor and reader, Development and cancer biology, School of Biology, University of Nottingham
Penny Howard Lecturer, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Physiotherapy, University of Nottingham

Paul Scotting and Penny Howard outline the known agents and mechanisms that can trigger carcinogenesis, including infectious and environmental factors

To understand how and why cancer occurs, we need to understand carcinogenesis, the process by which agents called carcinogens cause damage to genes and the nature of the damage that leads to mutations. Similarly, knowledge of the mutations that result in cells becoming cancerous allows us to understand why certain therapeutic strategies might work, while others would not. A glossary of the terms used in this article is provided on page 27.

Cancer Nursing Practice. 12, 5, 23-28. doi: 10.7748/cnp2013.


Peer review

This article has been subject to double blind peer review

Conflict of interest

None declared

Received: 21 February 2013

Accepted: 29 April 2013