A Novel Study on the Link Between Negative Thinking and TP53-Mutated Carcinogenesis
By Sophia Yang
Intermediate Category (Grades 9-10)
Study | Biology, Psychology
Two-thirds of adult cancer cases are caused by random genetic mutations. This means that adults who haven’t been extensively exposed to carcinogens are as susceptible to developing cancer as those who lead less preventative lives, all due to bad luck in genetics. This phenomenon gave me some insight into why two of my relatives who were very healthy got diagnosed with cancer.
Something I noticed with both of my relatives is that they were in a negative mental state (regarding situations unrelated to their health) prior to their diagnosis. I hypothesized that there was a correlation between negative thinking and mutation in the TP53 gene. I chose the TP53 gene because it is the most commonly mutated gene in cancer, and without the production of p53 proteins the likelihood of developing cancer is over 90%. A content analysis showed that constant negative thoughts over a long period of time can change the way signals are being interpreted in the body and stimulate the release of compounds that prevent genes from producing proteins. In addition, thirty-seven case studies revealed that 92.5% of patients with the TP53 mutation dealt with chronic negativity (>25 weeks) prior to any symptoms or diagnosis of their disease.
The findings of this study demonstrate the prevalence of the mind in disease, and suggests that negative thinking has a strong correlation with gene mutation and cancer development. It provides evidence of the mind-body connection and opens the door to a variety of innovative treatment and diagnosis methods in modern medicine to be explored in the future.