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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 21  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 539-545

Cancer prevention, the need to preserve the integrity of the genome at all cost

1 Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria Enugu Campus, Nigeria
2 Department of Haematology and Immunology, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
3 Department of Biochemistry College of Medicine, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
4 Department of Surgical Oncology, Al-Amal National Hospital for Cancer Management, Iraq, Baghdad

Correspondence Address:
Dr. T U Nwagha
Department of Haematology and Immunology, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria Nsukka, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/njcp.njcp_272_17

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Introduction: The entire genetic information carried by an organism makes up its genome. Genes have a diverse number of functions. They code different proteins for normal proliferation of cells. However, changes in the base sequence of genes affect their protein by-products which act as messengers for normal cellular functions such as proliferation and repairs. Salient processes for maintaining the integrity of the genome are hinged on intricate mechanisms put in place for the evolution to tackle genomic stresses. Aim: To discuss how cells sense and repair damage to their deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) as well as to highlight how defects in the genes involved in DNA repair contribute to cancer development. Methodology: Online searches on the following databases such as Google Scholar, PubMed, Biomed Central, and SciELO were done. Attempt was made to review articles with keywords such as cancer, cell cycle, tumor suppressor genes, and DNA repair. Results: The cell cycle, tumor suppression genes, DNA repair mechanism, as well as their contribution to cancer development, were discussed and reviewed. Conclusion: Knowledge on how cells detect and repair DNA damage through an array of mechanisms should allay our anxiety as regards cancer development. More studies on DNA damage detection and repair processes are important toward a holistic approach to cancer treatment.

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