Lung Cancer in Humans and the Rat Respiratory Systems

870 WordsJul 26, 20134 Pages
Rylee Coder Biology period 4 May 19, 2013 Lung Cancer in Humans and the Rat Respiratory System The human respiratory system is very similar, if not practically identical, to the respiratory system of a rat. The only notable difference is the division of the lobes in human lungs. The left lung of a rat is composed of 1 lobe, while the right lung has 4 lobes. The right lung of a human contains 3 lobes and the left lung is composed of 2 lobes. Other than that (and some structural differences along with size) the human and rat respiratory systems work in the same way. (Rat Health Guide, 2012). A respiratory disease that humans (not rats) are known to obtain is lung cancer. To understand what lung cancer does, you must first understand how…show more content…
Carcinogens have the ability to damage and alter the DNA of cells in the body. When smoking, lung cells are exposed to these harmful substances and it can cause the uncontrollable division of cells (cancer). (eHow Health) There are two main types of lung cancers. These types are known as small cell lung cancer and non-small cell lung cancer. (Cornell University, 2013) Cancer cells of each type are treated differently, as they grow and spread in different ways. Small cell lung cancer is also known as oat cell carcinoma and accounts for about 15% of lung cancers. Oat cell carcinoma usually begins in the bronchi, but spreads quickly and early to the brain. Small cell lung cancer responds to chemotherapy at first, but it becomes more and more defiant to treatment as the disease goes on. It is separated into two groups, extensive stage and limited stage. People are usually already at the extensive stage of the disease when they are first diagnosed. Most cases are found in men (probably because of a hormone reaction) and are due to smoking. (About.com, 2012) Non-small cell lung cancer accounts for approximately 85-90% of lung cancer. Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is divided into three different groups. While these cancer cells vary in shape, size, and chemical-makeup, they are all grouped into NSCLC because of similar treatment and outlook. (American Cancer
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