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Honors Project Checkpoint #2-Cancer and Health

By: Amber McCool

Patient #: 003

1. Define cancer in your own words:

Cancer is a disease where your cells divide rapidly and destroy body tissues. There are
many types of cancer and people are trying to prevent and cure it.

2. Describe how cancer develops and its connection with mitosis:

(According to BrightHub) Mitosis is the process where cells reproduce. Without mitosis the
cancerous cells would not divide. The cells divide rapidly so mitosis is happening at an
increased rate in the cancerous cells and dont receive the signal to stop as they are
supposed to. The cancerous cells are a mutated version of normal cells, and once mutated
the cells seem to grow much faster and undergo uncontrolled abnormal mitosis.

3. Define Metastasis. In a timeline, list the steps for how metastasis occurs.
Metastasis is the process whereby cancer cells break free from a tumor and travel to and
invade other tissues in the body. The steps of metastasis include local tumor invasion,
entry and survival within the blood cells, spread throughout lymph channels called
lymphatic spread, reaching distant organs and the formation of new lesions along new
blood vessels feeding the tumor.
4. What cancers have been scientifically linked to poor nutrition and obesity? For each,
state, using a correctly-formatted in-text citation, why scientists think poor nutrition or
obesity is a contributing factor.
(According to
Breast cancer- It is found that an increased estrogen level is linked to breast cancer.
After menopause, women stop producing estrogen so the main source of estrogen
then becomes a womens fat tissue. With increased fat tissue comes an increased
level of estrogen leading to a higher risk.
Endometrial cancer- Not yet found but speculated that the levels of estrogen or risk
of diabetes
Colorectal cancer- Higher BMI in men. Not yet found why but it is hypothesized that
high levels of insulin could be a contributing factor.
Kidney cancer/ Renal cell cancer- High blood pressure and maybe high insulin levels.
Esophageal Adenocarcinoma- It is possible that obesity exacerbates the esophageal
inflammation that is associated with this condition
Pancreatic cancer- Weight circumference
Gallbladder cancer- Increased BMI and increased chance of gallstones
5. For the cancers that you described in #4, list the ethnicities that most often get these
cancers. Include a correctly-formatted parenthetical in-text citation in your answer (it can
be the same source that you used for #4 above)
(According to Susan G. Komen)

Breast cancer- White women

(According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (each different articles but
the same site))

Endometrial Cancer- White women

Colorectal Cancer- African Americans
Kidney cancer/ Renal Cell Cancer- African Americans (males)
Pancreatic cancer- African Americans

(According to American Cancer Society)

Gallbladder Cancer- Mexican Americans/ Native Americans

(According to Cancer.Net)

Esophageal Cancer- African Americans

6. What foods/diets are linked to lowered cancer risks? (Hint: Looking up antioxidants and
describing what they do would be good here). Include in your answer a correctly formatted
in-text citation different from the one that you used in #s 4 and 5
(According to National Cancer Institute)
Antioxidants are chemicals that interact and neutralize free radicals. Free radicals are highly
reactive chemicals that could potentially harm cells. When free radicals are at high
concentrations they can destroy important parts of the cell such as DNA and contribute
majorly to the development of cancer. The body makes antioxidants naturally but also
depends on an outside source to get enough to defend the cells. Some outside sources can
come from supplements, fruits, vegetables and grains, which are rich with exogenous
antioxidants. Taking in enough antioxidants have been linked to a reduced risk of cancer in
many studies.

7. Describe how at least one of the following factors also relates to cancer: genetics, lifestyle,
stress, environmental factors. Include in your answer, a correctly formatted in-text citation
different from the others that you have used.
(According to the National Cancer Institute)
Cancer is a genetic disease where some of your genes are mutated and grow rapidly. Some
genetic mutations causing cancer can be inherited from your parents if the changes are
within your reproductive cells. They can also be acquired from your lifestyle choices such as
exposure to tobacco smoke or suns UV rays. Some beliefs of hereditary genes are actually
from the shared family having the same lifestyle choices. For example, if you and a family
member are both being exposed to tobacco smoke, whether its first or second hand, both
members may develop lung cancer. Your genetics and whether or not theyre mutated affect
your risk of cancer immensely and can be tested by doctor.

8. Give a detailed analysis of your patients risk for developing cancer later in life. Include in
your analysis ALL of the following: genetics (family history), nutrition, antioxidant intake,
ethnicity, lifestyle, environmental factors in this area.
(According to NHI BMI calculator) My patient is already slightly overweight. Taking this into
consideration and his lack healthy diet and exercise, it is clear to see that based on my
research he is well on his way to developing some form of cancer. My patient is taking in
very unhealthy foods that are low in antioxidants. Without any antioxidants the body will
have harder time defending free radicals and increase the risk of the deterioration of his
cells. In my patients family history, there is a high chance of the development of diabetes.
His genes are already susceptible to one disease which will make it easier for cancer to
come in also. This is especially true because my patient does no exercise, eats out at least
3 times a week and on a regular day eats very unhealthy. The only thing that could
possibly be good in my patients case is that according to the cancers I searched, being a
white male is the least at risk to developing one of the above cancers. However the other
facts regarding my patients health overpower that one statistic and I have concluded that
based on all of my gathered information my patient is very susceptible to cancer and if he
does not change his lifestyle starting now then he will live a life of hardships in the future.
9. List the 3 primary or secondary resources that you have cited in this checkpoint. These
should be in correct MLA format!

Arnold, Paul. "What Is the Link Between Mitosis and Cancer?" Bright Hub. 9 Sept.
2011. Web. 02 Mar. 2016.
Mandal, Ananya, MD. "What Is Metastasis?" 2011. Web. 02 Mar.

"Obesity and Cancer Risk." National Cancer Institute. 3 Jan. 2012. Web. 06 Mar. 2016.
"Antioxidants and Cancer Prevention." National Cancer Institute. 16 Jan. 2014. Web. 06 Mar.