Cancer cells self-destruct in blind mole rats

Underground rodents evolved a way to zap mutating tissue

By Tina Hesman Saey, 17:59 PM November 5, 2012

Subterranean rodents with no eyes may show scientists a new way to beat cancer.

Blind mole rats — solitary, tunnel-dwelling cousins of rats and mice — live a long time and don’t get cancer. Biologists thought the animals probably avoided the disease through the same strategy seen in naked mole rats, another long-lived subterranean rodent related to guinea pigs. In those animals, a cell-death program turns on when cells get overcrowded, as might happen in a tumor.

But it turns out that bl...

Source URL: https://www.sciencenews.org/article/cancer-cells-self-destruct-blind-mole-rats?mode=magazine&context=4541