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You can't drop your last class using the "Add/Drop" menu in DuckWeb. Go to the “Completely Withdraw from Term/University” link to begin the complete withdrawal process. If you need assistance with a complete drop or a complete withdrawal, please contact the Office of Academic Advising, 364 Oregon Hall, 541-346-3211 (8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday). If you are attempting to completely withdraw after business hours, and have difficulty, please contact the Office of Academic Advising the next business day.
Expanded Course Description
We tend to think of cancer as a single disease that affects many different tissues or organs. However, cancer is really a collection of over one hundred diseases that show various clinical manifestations, but have similar underlying causes and effects: the normal genetic controls of cell division malfunction, allowing a cell to undergo unbridled proliferation. This course for non-science majors will explore the genetic and cellular bases of cancer, from origin to treatment. No prior coursework in Biology is required.
Students will first be introduced to basic principles of cell biology and cellular reproduction to understand how cells are produced, how they function, how they die and are replaced, and how they form tissues. When the normal regulation of cellular division is absent, cells begin their transformation to a cancerous state. We will examine the changes that occur in a cancerous cell, and how this transformation can lead to aggressively mobile cells (metastasis) and undifferentiated masses (tumors).
A genetic perspective will follow. We will learn some basic genetic principles so that the nature of genes that contribute to a cell's cancerous state can be understood. This will also allow students to grasp the notion of carcinogenic substances and their direct effects on the cell's genes. These and other factors that increase our risk of contracting cancer will be discussed, with particular attention to the lifestyle choices that put us in jeopardy.
The last portion of the course will be dedicated to how we deal with cancer: the detection and diagnosis of various cancers, how our natural immune defenses respond to cancerous cells, and the therapies to cure or mitigate cancer, both traditional and experimental.