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Cancer in old age 

Cancer in old age
Chapter:
Cancer in old age
Author(s):

Margot Gosney

, Adam Harper

, and Simon Conroy

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199592340.003.0024
Page of

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date: 20 April 2021

Association of cancer and ageing 528

Professor Vladimir N Anisimov

Presentation of cancer in old age 530

Professor Margot Gosney

Breast cancer 532

Professor Riccardo A Audisio and Dr Siri Rostoft Kristjansson

Colorectal cancer 534

Dr Catherine Jane Quarini

The incidence of malignant tumours increases progressively with age, both in animals and in humans. Cancer is a common cause of disability and death in older people: over 50% of malignant neoplasms occur in persons over 70 years. Two major hypotheses have been proposed to explain the association of cancer and age. The first hypothesis holds that this association is a consequence of the duration of carcinogenesis. The second proposes that age-related progressive changes in the internal milieu of the organism may provide an increasingly favourable environment for the initiation of new neoplasms and for the growth of already existent, but latent, malignant cells. These mechanisms may also include proliferative senescence, as the senescent cells loses the ability to undergo apoptosis, and produce substances favouring cancer growth and metastases....

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