Photograph by Justin Guariglia
A young woman exhales cigarette smoke in Shanghai, China. The People's Republic of China is both the world's largest producer and largest consumer of tobacco, which has led to an impending cancer epidemic in the most populous country on Earth.
Chernobyl's Cancerous Shadow
Photograph by Gerd Ludwig
More than 20 years later, the catastrophe of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor explosion isn’t over for Oleg, 54, and Dima, 13. The two are recovering from thyroid surgery at a medical facility in Belarus. Since the world's largest nuclear disaster in 1986, cases of thyroid cancer have exploded as well, afflicting thousands who could not afford to relocate. The United Nations estimates that seven million people still live on radioactive land contaminated by the explosion.
Photograph by Moredun Animal Health Ltd/Science Photo Library
A scanning electron micrograph provides a color depiction of a small cancerous tumor within a human lung. The tumor is covered in microscopic hairlike structures called microvilli, which enable absorption and secretion. Smoking and other tobacco use are responsible for nearly all cases of lung cancer.
Breast Cancer Survivors
Photograph by Peter Essick; photograph of Marleen Quint by Amelia Davis
There's no proof that chemicals wafting from factories triggered breast cancer in three women who lived in Richmond, California. But Marleen Quint, with graphic proof of her ordeal, suspects living in sight of the plants was a factor. "My mother is 79 and has all her body parts." Quint, Wanna Wright, center, and Etta Lundy hope to force a nearby oil refinery to reduce "flaring" of excess gases.
Photograph by Karen Kasmauski
For Bonnie Frost, radiation offers hope in her fight against cancer. At the University of California's Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, doctors pinpoint the tumor pressing against her spinal cord with a CT scanner, then treat it with heavy-ion radiation. The mask and brace keep her head perfectly still.
Photograph by Zephyr/Science Photo Library
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was used to produce this image of cancer (orange area) that has spread from the lungs to the brain. This person will have the option of whole body treatment to fight the cancer, but at this stage, the disease is usually inoperable and fatal.
Photograph by Jodi Cobb
A cancer patient receives care from an oncologist visiting rural Rappahannock General Hospital in Kilmarnock, Virginia. Dr. Charles Smith, director of cancer education at the Medical College of Virginia's Massey Cancer Center in Richmond, Virginia, brings specialized treatment to patients at small, rural hospitals.
Skin Cancer Prevention
Photograph by Sarah Leen
Sunbathers apply sunscreen on Scarborough Beach in western Australia in an attempt to thwart the cancerous effects of the sun's UV rays. Skin cancers are often detected earlier than other cancers since they can reveal themselves externally in the form of moles or enlarged birthmarks. The effectiveness of sunscreen is debatable, however; critics say it can prevent burns but does little to stop cancer, and sunscreen is often made with chemicals that could increase risk of other forms of cancer.
Photograph by Sarah Leen
Botanist James S. Miller combs a Madagascar rain forest for potentially cancer-fighting flowers. Here he picks a specimen from a tree of the Melastoma family that will go to the National Cancer Institute, which has identified thousands of plants active against cancer cells, more than half of which come from rain forests.
Photograph by James L. Amos
Gloved hands cradle a bright hope in the war against cancer. A researcher at a drug manufacturing plant in Pennsylvania displays a petri dish of cisplatin, a chemotherapy drug containing platinum. Cancer cells divide and reproduce at highly abnormal rates. Cisplatin attacks the cell cycle, killing them and reducing the size of tumors. Chemotherapy is one of the most successful methods to combat cancer.
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Buried in the English countryside. Anglo-Saxon in origin. Who hid it and why?
There was only one way scientists could unlock the mystery of the famous iceman. Take away his ice.
As the global population soars toward nine billion by 2045, this corner of Africa shows what's at stake in the decades ahead.
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