What makes naked mole rats immune to cancer?



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    Naked mole rats have two genes that prevents the kind of cellular overcrowding that cancer cells need to proliferate.  One, their first line of defense, is a gene called p27, which humans also have.  When this gene fails (which it does, since humans have cancer) the naked mole rat relies on a second gene that only it seems to have, a gene called p16 that stops cellular overcrowding COLD.  Basically, p16 makes it impossible for cancer cells to grow, which makes them immune.

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