Cancer reflects the processes of the evolution of life

A prostate cancer cell. Photo: Science Photo Library

In the frantic search for an elusive "cure", few researchers stand back and ask a very basic question: why does cancer exist? What is its place in the grand story of life? Astonishingly, in spite of decades of research, there is no agreed theory of cancer, no explanation for why, inside almost all healthy cells, there lurks a highly efficient cancer subroutine that can be activated by a variety of agents - radiation, chemicals, inflammation and infection.

Sunday, 27 January, 2013, 7:25am

Finding the Higgs boson tops scientific achievements this year

Finding the Higgs boson, and the year's other triumphs

From landing the Curiosity rover on Mars after a 350-million-mile journey, to the discovery of the world's most wanted subatomic particle, the top 10 scientific achievements of 2012 have been nominated by the journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, showing the march of human knowledge in genetics, physics, cosmology, medicine and nanoscience.

30 Dec 2012 - 3:54am

If you can invent a new mobile application, what will it be?

Yasmin Subba, 16, Sha Tin College

I'd invent a Yolo (you only live once) app. Does it sound cheesy? Read on.

27 Jun 2012 - 12:00am

Three-parent embryo

Three-parent embryos are another scientific breakthrough that have caused controversy, followed news that embryos whose genetic materials come from a man and two women have been successfully created earlier this month.

18 Feb 2008 - 12:00am



by Stephen King

Hodder, HK$112

17 Dec 2006 - 12:00am

Race is still wide open

Due to overwhelming interest, the Amazing Race Asia has extended its deadline to March 31. SPE Networks (Asia), who are behind the Asian version of the hit reality show, says it has been inundated with entrants. General manager Ricky Ow said: 'So far, nearly 10,000 application forms have been downloaded from our website and we have seen some excellent audition videos.'

16 Mar 2006 - 12:00am

Ask Mr Brain...all will be explained

Which is the longest mountain range in the world? The Andes mountains, which stretch 7,200 kilometres along the entire west coast of South America from Tierra del Fuego to Panama and Colombia, form the world's longest range above sea level.

20 Dec 1999 - 12:00am

Ask Mr Brain...all will be explained

Why is snot green? WONG YUEN-LAM Pui Ying College A few readers have asked that one, along with 'what is it?' The inside of your nose is lined with a protective mucus membrane, similar to that in your lungs and stomach. This lining is the body's first line of defence against invading bacteria, viruses and other unwelcome visitors.

13 May 1999 - 12:00am

Cell hanging foiled

Police rescued a prisoner, 23, who tried to hang himself with a blanket in a cell at Tai Po police station.

25 Aug 1997 - 12:00am

Error in time

ON reading my letter headlined, ''Contradicts Scriptures'' (South China Morning Post, April 19), I noticed a mistake in the fifth paragraph which I'd made while typing it up. The time gap between the first bacteria and the human cell is in the range of several hundred million years, and not several hundred thousand years as I erroneously typed.


23 Apr 1993 - 12:00am