The Fight Against Cancer: Recent Developments and Statistics

Madison Castello, Staff Writer

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Cancer has been steadily increasing over the years, leaving experts to ask the essential question: why is this happening? Despite our advanced technological advancements, scientists are still seeking the cure to this life-consuming disease. We are making progress in medication and prescription drugs, yet the National Cancer Institute estimates that 609,640 people will die from the disease in 2018 – and that’s just the bare estimate.

Now, many wonder what exactly causes this disease. Is it smoking, lack of exercise, or just rudimentary genetics? Scientists speculate that it may be all three. Smoking has always been considered “bad” for our health yet it has been proven to be one of the leading causes of cancer. Cancer Research UK says that “smoking accounts for more than…3 in 20 cancer cases” and that “being smoke-free can prevent 15 types of cancer.” Smoking cigarettes or cigars can often damage your DNA and lead to disease.

Another possible cause of this devastating disease could be the general lack of exercise in today’s society. Obesity is becoming more and more prominent as time goes on. Food has become less nutritional and more flavorful. Visiting the gym is now a monthly holiday instead of an ordinary occasion. The National Cancer Institute claims that “about 28,000 new cases of cancer…were due to being overweight or obesity.”

Lastly is genetics, which seems to play a role in every aspect of life. Genetic mutations are the biggest cause of cancer and can be tied to smoking and obesity. Both reasons, mentioned earlier, may result in some form of damaged DNA. Yet cancer can also be passed down from generation to generation through hereditary mutations. Those with hereditary mutations will not necessarily get cancer, but their chances of the disease developing are much higher. “Inherited genetic mutations play a major role in about 5 to 10 percent of all cancers,” the National Cancer Institute states.

As of now, cancer is still incurable, yet our scientists are making tremendous progress in finding answers to this deadly question. To help end this malignant disease, you can donate to organizations dedicated to finding a cure and saving lives such as the American Childhood Cancer Organization, American Cancer Society, and National Cancer Institute.

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About the Writer
Madison Castello, Staff Writer

Madison Castello (11) is a junior and a second year journalist for the school paper. She is involved in her school’s Color Guard and National Honor Society. In her free time she enjoys listening to Broadway musicals, spending time with friends, and reading whatever book she can find.

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The Fight Against Cancer: Recent Developments and Statistics