Cancer Cells Shut Down The Immune System.

colon cancer cells treated with chemotherapy drugs

Cancer develops when important genes become damaged. The targeted genes usually control things like whether or not a cell will reproduce, live or die. Those genes that normally provide a 'go' signal are called proto-oncogenes and those that act as 'stop' signals are called tumor suppressors.

New research looking at thousands of genes has found that in cancer, some broken tumor suppressors do more than just let cells divide in an out-of-control way. They actually prevent the immune system from recognizing the cancer cells. This surprising result could be a really important discovery! If it is proven to be true, the bad behavior of these genes could become the target of new cancer treatments.

Image Credit
Image from the US National Cancer Institute