Can cancer be used for regrowth?


If cancer is uncontrolled cell growth, can we harness it to regrow entire body parts?

In: Biology

Not really, because cancer is both uncontrolled and the growth of a single cell type.

If we could turn growth on and off at will, we might be able to overcome cancer’s uncontrolled growth. This would be a cure for cancer, which would be monumental in other ways.

Secondly, your arm, for instance, has tons of different cell types in it: muscle cells, skin cells, nerve cells, etc. So the uncontrolled (or controlled, if you solve the first issue) growth of a single cell type won’t regrow an arm, it’ll just grow a chunk of muscle. Getting the nerves to reconnect is also an issue, since that requires “rewiring” the existing nerve cells to send and receive signals from these new nerve cells properly.

A simple answer would be No.

The reason being they are uncontrolled cell growth. They do not have the moleclar functions that tell the cell to stop growing or to repair itself or to become a specific cell with a specific function.

Using cancer cells to regrow and then stop its growth is also not probable cos the problem lies in its genetic make up and to stop it from growing we have to destroy all the cells with that genetic makeup which brings us back to ground zero again.

We can alter cells to grow from stem cells and then implant it. I think this is the closest idea so far to what you propsed but it’s way different from cancer cells cos the genetic make up is not faulty and growth os controllable.