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求教对生物科学专业翻译的解读
Thread poster: Wenjer Leuschel
Wenjer Leuschel  Identity Verified
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May 20, 2007

读到某些非属自己专业的翻译文字,如果读不懂,往往不是觉得自己的中文差劲,就是认为一定是自己的专业水平太差,所以读不懂那样的文字。换句话说,没吃过猪肉,舔一下猪肉,竟然说不出它的味道,只知道这一舔会拉肚子,因此对专业产生了极度的敬畏。

昨夜在飞机上看报纸,读到底下这么一篇有关生物科学的外电报导,我左思右想,觉得自己对这个专业还真的一点概念都没有。不知有生物科学背景的翻译同仁看法如何,可否稍微解释一下猪走路和猪肉味道之间的关系。

http://news.chinatimes.com/2007Cti/2007Cti-News/2007Cti-News-Content/0,4521,110504%20112007052000056,00.html

中国时报 2007.05.20 
抑制p53基因 有助化疗癌患存活
阎纪宇/综合十九日外电报导

基因变异与癌症有密切关系,号称能够杀死肿瘤细胞的「P53基因治疗」更是近来医药界关注的焦点。不过美国一群科学家最近发现,对于接受过化学治疗的癌症病人,正常的P53基因似乎反而会协助修复受损的癌细胞,因此导致病况再度恶化。论文发表在「公共科学图书馆」(PloS ONE,http://www.plosone.org)。
P53基因位于人类第十七条染色体,它能够修补细胞内断裂或损坏的DNA;当这些DNA无法修补,P53基因制造的蛋白质会抑制细胞生长周期,诱发细胞凋亡机制,防范正常细胞转变为癌细胞。临床上约有五○%癌症病例出现P53基因或蛋白质表现异常,科学家相信将P53基因藉由载体或直接注射进入患者体内,可以有效抑制恶性肿瘤的生长。
不过由乔治亚理工学院教授麦唐纳领军的研究人员,针对一群接受过化疗的卵巢癌患者进行长期观察,结果发现P53基因功能正常病患的五年存活率只有三○%,远低于P53基因变异失效病患的七○%。麦唐纳表示:「如果我们的想法正确,那么抑制化疗后病患的P53基因,将可望大幅提升他们的长期存活率。」
另一项值得注意的癌症研究进展,是关于癌症病患能否捐血。一般认为癌症患者不应捐血,以免危及他人。不过瑞典卡洛林斯卡学院的研究人员调查发现,癌症患者的血液并不会升高接受输血者的罹癌风险。


我看不懂的是红色标出的部分。如果有哪位具有生物科学专业的同仁碰巧能够解读,帮个忙,请用简单的中文解说一下:“P53基因功能正常病患的五年存活率只有三○%,远低于P53基因变异失效病患的七○%”和“抑制化疗后病患的P53基因,将可望大幅提升他们的长期存活率”之间的逻辑关系。


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wherestip  Identity Verified
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Article In English May 20, 2007

Wenjer,

I found a related article in English. I think it is quite clear in its explanation and should answer your question.

http://www.gatech.edu/news-room/release.php?id=1379



When a cell is malfunctioning or injured, the gene p53 is called into action and tries to repair the cell. If the cell can’t be repaired, p53 starts a process known as apoptosis that kills the cell. It’s p53’s role as one of the genes involved in initiating cell death that has led cancer researchers to long believe that the gene is essential to successful chemotherapy. The idea is that p53 assists in killing the cancerous cells that the chemo treatment injures.

But in this latest trial, Georgia Tech researchers found that p53 may be a “double-edged sword.” Chemotherapy patients whose tumors had a mutated p53 gene that didn’t work had a much better survival rate than those who had normal p53.

In the study, researchers took malignant and benign ovarian tumors straight from the operating room and compared their gene expression profiles. Some of the cancer patients had been treated with chemotherapy prior to surgery, and some had not. At this point researchers didn’t consider whether the patients actually had malignant tumors or had been treated with chemotherapy. However, they found that the gene expression profiles of the tumors clustered the chemotherapy-treated patients into two groups: those whose profiles were similar to cancer patients who had not been treated with chemo and those whose profiles were similar to patients with benign tumors.

As they continued their analysis, they found that the main difference between the groups’ genetic profiles was the gene p53. While both groups had roughly the same amount of the protein encoded by p53, the cancer group had mutations in their p53 that caused the gene’s corresponding protein not to function.The benign group’s p53 was normal.

Five years later, only 30 percent of the chemotherapy cancer patients clustering in the benign group were alive, while 70 percent of those clustering in the cancer group were still alive. The stage of cancer at the time of surgery had no correlation to who survived and who didn’t. What did seem to have an effect was whether p53 was working or not in the chemotherapy-treated tumors.

A standard belief in cancer research is that a working p53 is essential in helping chemo patients because it turns on the killing mechanism for the cells that were damaged by chemo. But McDonald points out that p53 can also help repair damaged cells. If p53 is repairing cancer cells, that may lead to cancer recurrence.





[Edited at 2007-05-20 23:31]


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Wenjer Leuschel  Identity Verified
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Well May 20, 2007

Steve,

Please take a look of the paper at http://www.plosone.org/article/fetchArticle.action?articleURI=info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0000441 and you will find in the introduction the passage "Our findings indicate that p53 mediated cell-cycle-arrest/DNA repair serves as a barrier to optimal chemotherapeutic treatment of ovarian and perhaps other carcinomas and suggest that inhibition of p53 during chemotherapy may enhance the long-term survivorship of ovarian cancer patients."

It is clear what is meant. My question is actually this: How come either "inhibition of p53 during chemotherapy may enhance the long-term survivorship of ovarian cancer patients" or "inhibiting p53 in tumors being treated with chemotherapy may substantially improve patients' long-term survival" could become in Chinese "抑制化疗病患的P53基因,将可望大幅提升他们的长期存活率"?

You see, when we read in English, we would have any problem to figure out the logic. But I did have a problem understanding it when reading in Chinese on flight and at home until I found and read some relevant articles. Could it be a sign of lack of knowledge in the field on my side?


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Jianjun Zhang  Identity Verified
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看不懂 May 20, 2007

Wenjer Leuschel wrote:
My question is actually this: How come either "inhibition of p53 during chemotherapy may enhance the long-term survivorship of ovarian cancer patients" or "inhibiting p53 in tumors being treated with chemotherapy may substantially improve patients' long-term survival" could become in Chinese "抑制化疗病患的P53基因,将可望大幅提升他们的长期存活率"?


这一篇文字翻译得不好理解,我看英文比中文明白,应该不是老兄的问题,而是翻译者有问题。


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wherestip  Identity Verified
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Language preference in scientific studies May 20, 2007

Wenjer Leuschel wrote:

Steve,

Please take a look of the paper at http://www.plosone.org/article/fetchArticle.action?articleURI=info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0000441 and you will find in the introduction the passage "Our findings indicate that p53 mediated cell-cycle-arrest/DNA repair serves as a barrier to optimal chemotherapeutic treatment of ovarian and perhaps other carcinomas and suggest that inhibition of p53 during chemotherapy may enhance the long-term survivorship of ovarian cancer patients."

It is clear what is meant. My question is actually this: How come either "inhibition of p53 during chemotherapy may enhance the long-term survivorship of ovarian cancer patients" or "inhibiting p53 in tumors being treated with chemotherapy may substantially improve patients' long-term survival" could become in Chinese "抑制化疗病患的P53基因,将可望大幅提升他们的长期存活率"?

You see, when we read in English, we would have any problem to figure out the logic. But I did have a problem understanding it when reading in Chinese on flight and at home until I found and read some relevant articles. Could it be a sign of lack of knowledge in the field on my side?


Wenjer,

I'm not sure. I actually prefer to read scientific articles in English, especially when they were authored in English originally. I can see why you find the Chinese translation a little confusing. It probably was an abstract and wasn't a very good one at that.


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Jing Nie
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中文译得明白的 May 21, 2007

至少我是这么着认为。
文章里说,传统的观点认为P53是有益的。

但是最新的研究提出了相反的观点,即P53是有害的,因为修复化疗中受损的癌细胞。似乎文章里没有提出实验室证据,只是用了统计数据,证明P53基因表达不正常的人5年生存率远大于P53基因表达正常的人。因而他们设想,如果抑制了P53的表达,可以提高生存率。


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Wenjer Leuschel  Identity Verified
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Précise writing May 21, 2007

wherestip wrote:

Wenjer,

I'm not sure. I actually prefer to read scientific articles in English, especially when they were authored in English originally. I can see why you find the Chinese translation a little confusing. It probably was an abstract and wasn't a very good one at that.


When people read a paper or an article and write a comprehensible summary of it, it is call a "précise writing," sometimes understood as "abstract."

This piece is a negative example. Starting with the very first paragraph, "基因变异与癌症有密切关系,号称能够杀死肿瘤细胞的「P53基因治疗」更是近来医药界关注的焦点。不过美国一群科学家最近发现,对于接受过化学治疗的癌症病人,正常的P53基因似乎反而会协助修复受损的癌细胞 ,因此导致病况再度恶化。", a Chinese reader would wonder what for "不过" stands there. It confounds quite seriously and leads to my question of the logical ties between the asked two sentences, not just because of the "后" there.

Is that a translation problem or a bad writing problem? I am wondering. If we could not rely upon translations for acquiring knowledge, why did we need translators? It would be better to have people all educated in foreign languages.


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Wenjer Leuschel  Identity Verified
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那么如何解释文章开头的两句话呢? May 21, 2007

NieJing wrote:

至少我是这么着认为。
文章里说,传统的观点认为P53是有益的。

但是最新的研究提出了相反的观点,即P53是有害的,因为修复化疗中受损的癌细胞。似乎文章里没有提出实验室证据,只是用了统计数据,证明P53基因表达不正常的人5年生存率远大于P53基因表达正常的人。因而他们设想,如果抑制了P53的表达,可以提高生存率。


显然 P53 是修复细胞的基因,不管修复的是癌细胞或正常细胞,而不是杀死肿瘤细胞的基因,你不觉得吗?


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Jing Nie
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不过是一个大问题? May 21, 2007

“不过”还真有可能是问题,面向大众的报纸应该翻译的更清楚些。

对于本专业的人来说,“不过”不过是个小问题,不影响理解。但是对专业之外的人,情况可能不一样了。
Wenjer Leuschel wrote:
a Chinese reader would wonder what for "不过" stands there. It confounds quite seriously and leads to my question of the logical ties between the asked two sentences, not just because of the "后" there.




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Jing Nie
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我看不到原文 May 21, 2007

你说的链接我在这里是打不开的,没法看到文章。只是根据文中的内容推测。
P53应该不具有识别癌细胞的能力,对癌细胞正常细胞一视同仁,一起修复。
至于杀死肿瘤细胞的基因,我倒没听说过。癌细胞如果可以被体内抗体识别出来,就很容易被干掉,但是似乎除了“恶性葡萄胎”之外,没有哪种癌细胞可以很容易的被体内的免疫系统识别。
Wenjer Leuschel wrote:

NieJing wrote:

至少我是这么着认为。
文章里说,传统的观点认为P53是有益的。

但是最新的研究提出了相反的观点,即P53是有害的,因为修复化疗中受损的癌细胞。似乎文章里没有提出实验室证据,只是用了统计数据,证明P53基因表达不正常的人5年生存率远大于P53基因表达正常的人。因而他们设想,如果抑制了P53的表达,可以提高生存率。


显然 P53 是修复细胞的基因,不管修复的是癌细胞或正常细胞,而不是杀死肿瘤细胞的基因,你不觉得吗?



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Wenjer Leuschel  Identity Verified
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不需要看原文 May 21, 2007

"基因变异与癌症有密切关系,号称能够杀死肿瘤细胞的「P53基因治疗」更是近来医药界关注的焦点。" 这句话是错的!因此,原本只是个小问题的“不过”变成了大问题。

这完全不是读者的专业理解问题,而是翻译者的专业理解问题。再重复一次:你不觉得 P53 显然是修复细胞的基因,而不是杀死肿瘤细胞的基因吗?

拆白说,开场的第一句话是翻译者的瞎掰,所以第二句话才会有那么个奇怪的“不过”。如果是我审的稿件,那用专业的说词来也绝对唬不过。

NieJing wrote:

你说的链接我在这里是打不开的,没法看到文章。只是根据文中的内容推测。
P53应该不具有识别癌细胞的能力,对癌细胞正常细胞一视同仁,一起修复。
至于杀死肿瘤细胞的基因,我倒没听说过。癌细胞如果可以被体内抗体识别出来,就很容易被干掉,但是似乎除了“恶性葡萄胎”之外,没有哪种癌细胞可以很容易的被体内的免疫系统识别。
Wenjer Leuschel wrote:

显然 P53 是修复细胞的基因,不管修复的是癌细胞或正常细胞,而不是杀死肿瘤细胞的基因,你不觉得吗?



[Edited at 2007-05-21 01:35]


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Chun Un  Identity Verified
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同意NieJing的看法 May 21, 2007

同意NieJing的看法,除了一开始不是很明白“病患”(可能是“患者”的台湾说法),此段译文的意思很清楚。

关于生物科学的翻译。我看过一本台湾版的科普读物,再看了原文,才发现不是我的中文太差,是译文实在是不知所云。


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Wenjer Leuschel  Identity Verified
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病患 = patient(s) May 21, 2007

Chun Un wrote:

同意NieJing的看法,除了一开始不是很明白“病患”(可能是“患者”的台湾说法),此段译文的意思很清楚。

关于生物科学的翻译。我看过一本台湾版的科普读物,再看了原文,才发现不是我的中文太差,是译文实在是不知所云。


那么请你代替 NieJing 直接了当回答我上面问了两次的“你不觉得吗”。

老实说,原文里有答案,但这个 précise writing 一点也不 precise。我非常不喜欢拿专业来唬人。有没有读懂,从言语的逻辑上就可以看出,用不到专业。


[Edited at 2007-05-21 01:45]


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Jing Nie
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不太了解这个领域,我不敢再评价了。 May 21, 2007

Wenjer Leuschel wrote:

"基因变异与癌症有密切关系,号称能够杀死肿瘤细胞的「P53基因治疗」更是近来医药界关注的焦点。"


可以参考一下这篇文章。
http://www.wjgnet.com/1009-3079/11/1593.pdf


0 引言
p53 基因是一种重要的抑癌基因. 他在细胞周期调控
抑制细胞生长诱导肿瘤细胞凋亡等方面有重要的作
用. 其与肿瘤的关系十分密切因为人类恶性肿瘤中至
少有 50 % 发生了 p53 基因的变化因此p53 成为
近年来研究的热点. 以下就p53 基因的结构功能与以
及在肿瘤基因治疗中的研究进展作简要综述.
1 p53 的结构和功能
人类p53 基因位于1 7 号染色体的短臂上(17 p 13.1) 全
长16-20 kb 有10 个内含子和11 个外显子其中第
1 个外显子不编码其上游 4 00 bp 处有启动子P1
下游1 kb 处有启动子P2 二者为转录起始点. 正常的
p53 基因又称野生型p53 基因(wild type p53 wt-p53)
其编码的蛋白质是由393个氨基酸(aa) 组成的与细胞分
裂周期相关的核磷酸蛋白质Mr 53 000 称为p53 蛋白.
p53可以分为5个部分: N-末端的转录活化区(1-42 aa) 能
与一系列的蛋白结构(如MDM2 TBP TAFs)结合
而调节p53 的转录功能[1] ; 信号区(64-92 aa) 富含脯氨
酸有 5 个脯 -X-X- 脯重复顺序. 此区不是转录活化
所必须的但对诱导细胞调亡是必需的[2]; DNA 结合区
(102-292 aa) 识别顺序专一的DNA 序列; 四聚体化区
(324-355 aa) 此区能抑制癌细胞的生长; C- 末端的非
专一 DNA 结合区(370-393 aa) 能与非特异性的DNA
序列结合.


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Chun Un  Identity Verified
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答问 May 21, 2007

我没有看原文。根据所见的译文:

“P53基因位于人类第十七条染色体,它能够修补细胞内断裂或损坏的DNA;当这些DNA无法修补,P53基因制造的蛋白质会抑制细胞生长周期,诱发细胞凋亡机制,防范正常细胞转变为癌细胞。”

我的结论是:P53制造的的蛋白质不仅仅修复DNA,也能在某些情况下启动细胞的apoptosis(i.e. programmed cell death)。


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求教对生物科学专业翻译的解读

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