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Arizona Cancer Evolution Center

Writing in the journal Nature in a paper titled Cancer Risk Across Mammals, ACE researchers and their collaborators discuss why cancer rates are higher in some species than others.  It seems to have a lot to do with diet, with meat eaters having more cancer than species that eat plants, insects or animals other than mammals.   One possible explanation could be that cancer associated viruses are passed from prey to predator as the victim is eaten.  The research also confirms Peto’s paradox, that notes the puzzling fact that species that are large and long-lived don’t typically have a higher rate of cancer than smaller, short-lived animals – with fewer cells in their bodies to go ‘rogue’!  The paper was published in Dec 2021.

 

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