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Why do people get cancer? – Sascha, age 8, Hurstbridge, Victoria.

八岁的Sascha提问:为什么人会患癌症?



This is a really tough question, Sascha. Lots of very clever people are working hard to try to answer it. I have worked on this problem for many years, and to be honest it still blows my mind to really think about just how complex it is.

Sascha,这是一个非常困难的问题。很多非常聪明的人都在努力尝试去回答这个问题。我已经研究这个问题多年了,但是老实说,我仍然很惊讶这个问题有多么的复杂。

ltaaaTxt

Cancer cells can also spread to other parts of our body where they would not normally be found. This can cause important organs to stop doing their job and make us very unwell, or die.

癌细胞也可以扩散到我们身体的其他部位,这些地方通常是不会发现癌细胞的。这种情况会导致一些重要器官停止工作,使我们感到非常不适,或死亡。

Copying the code - and making mistakes

代码复制与犯错

The really incredible thing about cells is that they contain the instructions for making copies of themselves. These instructions are stored in a code called the genome, made of a quite beautiful chemical called DNA.

关于细胞真正令人难以置信的是,它们包含复制它们自身的说明书。这些说明被储存在一种叫做基因组的代码中,基因组是由一种叫做DNA的非常漂亮的化学物质组成的。

And if you took the DNA from all the cells in a human and lined it all up, it would stretch around the Moon and back six or seven times.

如果你将人体所有细胞中的DNA拿出来排成一条线,它会绕到月球并来回六到七次。

ltaaaTxt

This is what we call cancer.

这就是我们所说的癌症。

But why?

但是,为什么人会患癌症?

Now, back to the question of why we get cancer.

现在,回到我们为什么会患癌症这个问题上。

ltaaaTxt

Author
Darren Saunders
Associate professor, UNSW

作者
Darren Saunders
澳大利亚新南威尔士大学副教授