Why is elephant cancer rare? Answer might help treat humans

In this Thursday, Oct. 1, 2015 photo, an elephant crosses a road in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe, about 700 kilometres south west of Harare. Cancer is much less common in elephants than in humans, even though the big beasts' bodies have many more cells. That's a paradox known among scientists, and now researchers think they may have an explanation. In results published Thursday, Oct. 8, 2015 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, compared with other species, elephants' cells contain many more copies of a major cancer-suppressing gene that helps damaged cells repair themselves or self-destruct when exposed to cancer-causing substances. (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)CHICAGO (AP) — Cancer is much less common in elephants than in humans, even though the big beasts' bodies have many more cells. That's a paradox known among scientists, and now researchers think they may have an explanation — one they say might someday lead to new ways to protect people from cancer.



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