Pet Cancer Research Helps Pets and People
As we’ve been discussing this month, pet cancer is a serious problem. There are research projects currently underway worldwide with thoughts of not only helping pets afflicted with cancer, but humans as well. Research has shown that some forms of cancer rare in humans are much more common in pets, so studying and developing treatment options for pets ultimately helps animals and humans.
The Animal Cancer Foundation has collaborated with Cornell Medical Center to evaluate effectiveness of enhanced biological feedback to slow or stop growth of tumors. Pets that were unresponsiveness to other treatments were given this treatment with some positive results. Many showed dramatic prolonged survival (up to three years), with the tumors disappearing in some cases. This treatment is set to begin human trials through the FDA.
Another study of bone sarcoma in Rottweilers has shown possibilities in helping children and adolescents diagnosed with bone cancer. This study is scheduled for additional research.
A study began recently to study the DNA of canines to determine the genome makeup of cancer in pets and people. Saliva, blood and tumor samples from many dog breeds will be used in this study which is endorsed by the American Kennel Club (AKC) and the Morris Animal Foundation.
In the summer of 2009, an FDA-approved drug, Palladia, became the first cancer drug approved for treatment of mast cell cancer in dogs. Palladia kills tumor cells and cuts off blood supply to the tumor, helping dogs fight the disease more effectively. This drug is still quite new and results are mixed, but this does provide hope for pet owners.
These projects, and many others underway, will hopefully provide answers to help pets have a better chance of surviving this disease.
The American Cancer Foundation site, ScienceDaily and MSNBC were used as sources for this post