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What is Cancer?

Your body is composed of many millions of tiny cells, each a self-contained living unit. Normally, each cell coordinates with the others that compose tissues and organs of your body. One way that this coordination occurs is reflected in how your cells reproduce themselves. Normal cells in the body grow and divide for a period of time and then stop growing and dividing. Thereafter, they only reproduce themselves as necessary to replace defective or dying cells. Cancer occurs when this cellular reproduction process goes out of control. In other words, cancer is a disease characterized by uncontrolled, uncoordinated and undesirable cell division. Unlike normal cells, cancer cells continue to grow and divide for their whole lives, replicating into more and more harmful cells.