Biology of Ageing and Cancer

Hashim Missawi

Abstract


To emphasize the increased incidence of cancer in old people in Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) & worldwide. To correlate this data with the molecular biology of tumor formation & ageing mechanism. Planning for effective prevention & treatment of cancer in the elderly.
This study takes the most recent age specific incidence data ( the years 2002 to 2012) from the Saudi National Cancer Registry in KSA as well as using data from several population-based cancer reports like those of the WHO and the International Association for Research on Cancer. Scientific literature was reviewed to fit the available data with the biological changes in old age like increasing nuclear instability, apoptosis, telomere shortening and cell senescence.
Persons age 65 years and older bear the greater burden of cancer in the KSA and many other countries. Cancer rates increase with age. However, the incidence of cancer level off around 8o-90 years of age, followed by a plateau, or even a decline in the last decades of life. Therefore, it seems reasonable to consider that the very old people overcome the critical high incidence of cancer by three ways: 1- surviving 2- delaying or 3- escaping.
KSA ageing and cancer profiles are highlighted and compared to other datasets. There is a marked increases in cancer incidence with ageing but a marked decrease with more ageing. Study of the molecular mechanisms of ageing revealed a link and importance for advancing our understanding of tumor formation.

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