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  • Cancer prevention


    Cancer prevention is the practice of taking active measures to decrease the incidence of cancer and mortality. The practice of prevention is dependent upon both individual efforts to improve lifestyle and seek preventative screening, and socioeconomic or public policy related to cancer prevention. Globalized cancer prevention is regarded as a critical objective due to its applicability to large populations, reducing long term effects of cancer by promoting proactive health practices and behaviors, and its perceived cost-effectiveness and viability for all socioeconomic classes. The majority of cancer cases are due to environmental risk factors, and many, but not all, of these environmental factors are controllable lifestyle choices. Greater than a reported 75% of cancer deaths could be prevented by avoiding risk factors including: tobacco, overweight / obesity, an insufficient diet, physical inactivity, alcohol, sexually transmitted infections, and air pollution. Not all environmental causes are controllable, such as naturally occurring background radiation, and other cases of cancer are caused through hereditary genetic disorders.

  • Alpha-fetoprotein


    Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP, α-fetoprotein; also sometimes called alpha-1-fetoprotein, alpha-fetoglobulin, or alpha fetal protein) is a protein that in humans is encoded by the AFP gene. The AFP gene is located on the q arm of chromosome 4 (4q25). AFP is a major plasma protein produced by the yolk sac and the fetal liver during fetal development. It is thought to be the fetal analog of serum albumin. AFP binds to copper, nickel, fatty acids and bilirubin and is found in monomeric, dimeric and trimeric forms.

  • Elevated alkaline phosphatase


    Elevated alkaline phosphatase occurs when levels of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) exceed the reference range. This group of enzymes has a low substrate specificity and catalyzes the hydrolysis of phosphate esters in a basic environment. The major function of alkaline phosphatase is transporting across cell membranes. Alkaline phosphatases are present in many human tissues, including bone, intestine, kidney, liver, placenta and white blood cells. Damage to these tissues causes the release of ALP into the bloodstream. Elevated levels can be detected through a blood test. Elevated alkaline phosphate is associated with certain medical conditions or syndromes (e.g., hyperphosphatasia with mental retardation syndrome, HPMRS). It serves as a significant indication for certain medical conditions, diseases and syndromes. If the reason for alkaline phosphatase is unknown, isoenzyme studies using electrophoresis can confirm the source of the ALP. Heat stability also distinguishes bone and liver isoenzymes ("bone burns, liver lasts").

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