Cancerous Cell Growth and Development
|Image 1: Tumor development|
Characteristics of Cancer Cells
- Large number of dividing cells
- Variation in nuclear size and shape
- Variation in cell size and shape
- Loss of specialized cell features
- Loss of normal tissue organization
- Poorly defined tumor boundary
- Unusual staining characteristics when treated with particular dyes or other preparations designed to highlight cellular components not easily seen with the microscope
|Image 2: Characteristics of cancer cells|
|Image 3: Tissue invasion and metastasis|
|Focus Box: What is Angiogenesis?|
|Angiogenesis refers to the growth of new blood vessels. It is an important natural process controlled in a healthy body through a series of on and off switches. The main on switches are called angiogenesis-stimulating growth factors. The main off switches are called angiogenesis inhibitors.|
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Marieb EN. Human Anatomy and Physiology. 2nd ed. Redwood City, CA: The Benjamin/Cummings Publishing Company, Inc;1992.
What do doctors look for in biopsy and cytology specimens? American Cancer Society website. Available at: http://www.cancer.org/treatment/understandingyourdiagnosis/examsandtestdescriptions/testingbiopsyandcytologyspecimensforcancer/testing-biopsy-and-cytology-specimens-for-cancer-what-doctors-look-for. Updated April 20, 2015. Accessed May 1, 2015.
What is cancer? American Cancer Society website. Available at: http://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancerbasics/what-is-cancer. Updated April 15, 2015. Accessed May 1, 2015.
What is cancer? National Cancer Institute website. Available at: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/what-is-cancer. Accessed May 1, 2015.
- Reviewer: Mohei Abouzied, MD, FACP
- Review Date: 03/2015 -
- Update Date: 05/01/2015 -
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
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