Genome British Columbia - Genome Genomics

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Elephant genetics offer promise in fight against cancer

Elephants’ ability to avoid cancer is tied to its genetics. As it turns out, elephants have 20 copies of a tumor suppressor gene called p53. By contrast, humans have just one copy. The gene acts to repair damages that can lead to cancer, and by having more copies of this gene, elephants significantly reduce their burden of getting cancer. Includes a great 3-minute video for classrooms.

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