In a recent wonderful study article published in Cancer Research (http://cancerres.aacrjournals.org/content/early/2013/06/19/0008-5472.CAN-12-3546.abstract), veterinary oncologists and researchers from North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine, University of North Carolina, and Duke University show that diffuse large B-cell lymphoma is molecularly almost identical in dogs and people.
This NC State study is the first that uses molecular analysis by gene expression profiling (determining which genes are over or under expressed) and immunohistochemistry (staining a biopsy sample to determine the specific cell type) to compare canine lymphoma with human lymphoma.
This study is very important as it clearly demonstrates the similarity between lymphoma in dogs and people. Because of this similarity—from what the cells look like under a microscope, to the expression pattern of the genes in the tumor—scientists can use lymphoma in dogs as a model to develop treatment for human lymphoma.
Animal Cancer Foundation Executive Board President Dr. David Levine applauds this study as “an incredibly important step in the development of a more representative animal model for diffuse large B-cell lymphoma in people. ACF believes that through the support of comparative oncology studies such as this, we will make significant strides in our work to better diagnose, treat and prevent cancer in both pets and people.”