Brona McVittie reports :: September 2008

Luckily for lobsters, crabs and crayfish, tumours are fairly rare, and some individuals have reportedly lived as long as a century. What is the reason for the seeming absence of cancer in crustaceans? Could they reveal new truths for cancer research? A recent publication in the International Journal of Cancer supports this notion. G√ľnter Vogt (University of Heidelberg) believes that research on crustaceans could complement that of well-studied groups like mammals, fish, insects and molluscs, in which cancer is relatively common.  He suggests that differences between metabolism, immune systems and the regulation of stem cells may hold important clues as to their health and longevity.

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