Embryological Basis of Congenital Tumours

  • Philip Hammond
  • Srinivas Annavarapu


During normal cellular development, there is a complex system of checks and balances to ensure regulation of the cells as they proliferate and specialize to perform their physiological functions. Various genes cooperate, concomitantly and/or sequentially with others, to activate and direct the developmental mechanisms in a developing foetus. After their target is achieved, these pathways are either kept dormant or are used elsewhere in a different context (growth, repair, etc.). Reactivation of these genes, by various mutations and/or carcinogens, can reinstate these developmental pathways. If these pathways remain active incessantly and do not obey the normal regulatory mechanisms, cell proliferation becomes independent of the growth stimulus, and this produces a mass—cancer [1–3].


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Philip Hammond
    • 1
  • Srinivas Annavarapu
    • 2
  1. 1.Royal Hospital for Sick ChildrenEdinburghUK
  2. 2.Department of Cellular PathologyRoyal Victoria InfirmaryNewcastle-Upon-TyneUK

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