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  • Adult development


    Adult development encompasses the changes that occur in biological and psychological domains of human life from the end of adolescence until the end of one's life. These changes may be gradual or rapid, and can reflect positive, negative, or no change from previous levels of functioning. Changes occur at the cellular level and are partially explained by biological theories of adult development and aging. Biological changes influence psychological and interpersonal/social developmental changes, which are often described by stage theories of human development. Stage theories typically focus on “age-appropriate” developmental tasks to be achieved at each stage. Erik Erikson and Carl Jung proposed stage theories of human development that encompass the entire life span, and emphasized the potential for positive change very late in life. The concept of adulthood has legal and socio-cultural definitions. The legal definition of an adult is a person who has reached the age at which they are considered responsible for their own actions, and therefore legally accountable for them.

  • Minimal residual disease


    Minimal residual disease (MRD) is the name given to small numbers of leukaemic cells (cancer cells from the bone marrow) that remain in the person during treatment, or after treatment when the patient is in remission (no symptoms or signs of disease). It is the major cause of relapse in cancer and leukemia. Up until a decade ago, none of the tests used to assess or detect cancer were sensitive enough to detect MRD. Now, however, very sensitive molecular biology tests are available, based on DNA, RNA or proteins. These can measure minute levels of cancer cells in tissue samples, sometimes as low as one cancer cell in a million normal cells. In cancer treatment, particularly leukaemia, MRD testing has several important roles: determining whether treatment has eradicated the cancer or whether traces remain, comparing the efficacy of different treatments, monitoring patient remission status as well as detecting recurrence of the leukaemia or cancer, and choosing the treatment that will best meet those needs . The tests are not simple, are often part of research or trials, and some have been accepted for routine clinical use.

  • Precancerous condition


    A precancerous condition or premalignant condition is a condition or lesion involving abnormal cells which are associated with an increased risk of developing into cancer. Clinically, precancerous conditions encompass a variety of conditions or lesions with an increased risk of developing into cancer. Some of the most common precancerous conditions include certain colon polyps, which can progress into colon cancer, monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance, which can progress into multiple myeloma or myelodysplastic syndrome. and cervical dysplasia, which can progress into cervical cancer. Pathologically, precancerous lesions can range from benign neoplasias, which are tumors which do not invade neighboring normal tissues or spread to distant organs, to dysplasia, which involves collections of abnormal cells which in some cases have an increased risk of progressing to anaplasia and invasive cancer. Sometimes the term "precancer" is also used for carcinoma in situ, which is a noninvasive cancer that has not progressed to an aggressive, invasive stage. As with other precancerous conditions, not all carcinoma in situ will progress to invasive disease.

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