Theories on Development of Asbestos Related Tumors

There are different schools of thought when it comes to the way asbestos may cause tumor development and they include:

Genetic changes

When the asbestos fibers get into the mesothelial cells, they cause disruption on the life cycle of the cells something that induces changes in DNA leading to development of cancer.

Inflamed cells

The fibers may cause irritation and inflammation of the mesothelial cells leading to irreversible scarring, damage to the cellular structure, and development of cancer.

Cancerous mutations

The fibers lead to free radicals in body, which cause damage to the DNA making healthy cells to mutate and become cancerous.

Uncontrolled growth

The asbestos fibers may trigger the release of oncoproteins, and these kinds of proteins block genes responsible in protecting the cells from uncontrollably growing and forming tumors.

When you look at these theories, you will find a common ground that asbestos fibers change the life cycle of cells.

Healthy cells have genes able to regulate and protect the body against cancer and when the asbestos block this function, you may find the cells begin to divide uncontrollably leading to formation of malignant tumors whether localized or metastasized. The tumors tend to develop later on when mesothelioma has already started, but it’s one of the clinical symptoms of the cancer. Some types of asbestos are more carcinogenic compared to others, for example crocidolite and amosite.

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