Researchers report that women with genetic mutations that put them at dramatically increased risk of developing breast cancer may also face a heightened risk from radiation used during medical screening and diagnosis.
The imaging tools that help doctors identify disease, injury or damage to the body have long been known to carry some risk of cancer, in large part because ionizing radiation can damage the genetic material in the body.
Scientists reported new evidence Wednesday that supports a provocative theory about cancer.
Three separate teams of scientists said they had, for the first time, shown that so-called cancer stem cells can be found naturally in brain tumors and early forms of skin and colon cancer.
Evidence has been mounting in recent years for the existence of these cells, which would be especially insidious. They are believed to resist standard chemotherapy and radiation and fuel the growth of tumors and relapses.
Physicians at the University of Colorado Hospital are finding startling success with medications that are made to match the genes of a particular lung cancer. The new strategy means the drugs work only on certain patients – but they can work really well.