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Effects of mutation isn't always visible how does one know that a mutation has occur?

  1. Feb 16, 2009 #1
    And what type would that mutation be?

    Would it be correct to say that cancer mutations are not always visible, and one could run tests to see if the person has cancer?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 19, 2009 #2
    Re: Effects of mutation isn't always visible how does one know that a mutation has oc

    I assume you mean phenotypically? If so, it would be a silent point mutation. In this, a single nucleotide is replaced by another but, the sequence will still code for the same amino acid, and as such the protein will not change.

    Genotypically, it could be one of several types of mutations. It could be a missense point mutation, or a nonsense point mutation. In addition, it could be a deletion or insertion. Any of these can cause the cells to develop into oncogenes, in which the cells ability to know when to stop dividing ceases; which is in itself, cancer.

    All cancer mutations are visible at some point, though it can take many years for it to become visible, so I would assume that not all cancer mutations are visible initially but, will become visible eventually.

    As for cancer screening, there are many tests out there to test for many different types of cancer. If this is something concerning you, you'd best see your doctor or a specialist.
     
  4. Feb 20, 2009 #3
    Re: Effects of mutation isn't always visible how does one know that a mutation has oc

    Mutations are a constant and would very very rarely be expected to establish a significant cancerous state. Screening for each mutation event would not be useful.
     
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