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Arizona Cancer Evolution Center

In spite of decades of research, cancer remains an enigma. Conventional wisdom holds that cancer is driven by random mutations that create aberrant cells that run amok in the body.

In a new paper published this week in the journal BioEssays ACE researchers and colleagues challenge this model by proposing that cancer is a type of genetic throwback, that progresses via a series of reversions to ancestral forms of life. In contrast with the conventional model, the distinctive capabilities of cancer cells are not primarily generated by mutations, they claim, but are pre-existent and latent in normal cells.