Elephant genes hold big hopes for cancer researchers: Elephants have 100 times more cells in their bodies than humans, which should make them far more vulnerable to cancer than we are. But less than 5 percent of elephant deaths are linked to cancer, which researchers credit to the animals’ abundance of cell-suppressing genes -- genes that might represent the next step forward in the fight against cancer. Special correspondent Jackie Judd from PBS NewsHour reports.
This is exciting for patients with Li-Fraumeni Syndrome who have mutations or deletions in their TP53 genes and results in faulty p53 protein. Understanding TP53, the protein and how it affects cancer is a step towards better screening and treatment for these rare and special families. Thank you to Dr. Schiffman for his passion and dedication to our families, to PBS for sharing the story and the Means family for telling a bit about what it is like living with LFS.
DR. JOSHUA SCHIFFMAN: I don’t promise my patients it will happen, because I don’t want to have them disappointed. But if I didn’t believe this would work, I wouldn’t be trying it.
Previous Living LFS Blog on Dr. Schiffman's work with Elephants. The Elephant In the Room, Dr. Schiffman takes on TP53