Strands of evidence about cancer evolution

@swamidass You might find this interesting - if you haven’t seen it already? :slight_smile:

How a cancer evolves and how mutations are generated are highly intertwined processes, and both are nearly impossible to observe directly. Instead, we are usually restricted to making inferences about them using data from a single snapshot in time after a cancer has formed. Writing in Nature , Aitken et al .1 show that, for a cell that has undergone DNA damage, such a snapshot provides remarkably rich information when the two DNA strands that form the double helix are considered independently.

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Very interesting indeed:

Strand-by-strand analysis might be an unexpectedly useful tool for probing the tumour-promoting contribution of non-protein-coding regions of the genome, because selection can be detected without needing to know the background mutation rate — the problem of determining this rate has posed a challenge for methods previously used to study these regions3.