A research conducted at the University of Washington revealed that the mature cells inside the stomach undergo rapid division to act as stem cells. Another research aligned with the aforementioned finding suggests that this process may occur throughout the body irrespective of the organ. In other words, when mature cells are exposed to injury they start dividing rapidly to acts as stem cells. This process contributes to the initiation and propulsion of cancer within the body; the danger is higher in case of older cells that have accumulated all the cancer-causing mutations over their lifespan. Since the cells of organs such as liver, stomach, pancreas, and kidney undergo the same process when they re-divide, the cause of cancer could be the same across all these organs.
The researchers reveal that the cancers affecting different body parts exhibited extreme dissimilarities and patterns. However, an analysis of the initiation of these cancers shows that most of the organs undergo the same process of cell-division at the beginning. This may be helpful in devising common therapies against all newly developing cancers in the body. The researchers collected samples of stomach and kidney cells of mice and humans along with precancerous lesions in people to conduct the research. It was found that when a tissue is injured due to trauma or infections, the mature cells convert to stem cells to start dividing repeatedly.
The researchers state that nature has provided mature cells with the ability to re-divide, and this forms the basis of the study results. Development of anti-cancer drugs and treatments may get a substantial boost after this research. It would be interesting to see the impact that this research has on further developments in oncology.