We know there are several things that can contribute to cancer, but studies also suggest your risk can depend on biology and bad luck.
Researchers say even if the environment were pristine and there were no cigarettes, and we could fix faulty genes inherited from our parents, there is still the combination of biology and bad luck.
New research shows most cancer risk is from simple random mutations.
Researchers say every time a normal cell divides, about three mutations occur.
By attributing a large share of cancer risk to DNA errors that arise randomly, it sounds like there's little people can do to prevent cancer. But, the study authors say that's not true, because estimates suggest 42 percent of cancers cases could be prevented with improvements to lifestyle and environment.
They say people should indeed keep practicing behaviors that reduce their cancer risk.
The researchers of Johns Hopkins University examined data on 32 kinds of cancer. They found five percent of cancer-causing mutations can be linked to inherited genetic risk. 30 percent can be attributed to factors we can do something about, such as wearing sunscreen to prevent skin cancer. The remaining 66% of genetic mutations known to give cancer a foothold are random transcription errors in DNA.
Read more HERE
Photo Credit: Getty Images