Feb 12, 2012

Are Cancer Clinical Trials going to the dogs?

Canine clinical trials are helping test new treatments that might work for humans. If that happens, we may be thanking Max, Queenie, or Pal at some future date.

A team of scientists at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland is conducting canine cancer clinical trials. Other similar trials are being conducted at other centers. Cancer is a leading cause of death in dogs. Why is this approach unusual‑‑aren’t animals used to test drugs all the time?

  • The dogs are family pets that have been diagnosed with cancer by their vets and referred to the clinical trials. More than a million dogs are diagnosed with cancer every year—and that’s just in the U.S.
  • Cancer in dogs is often very similar to cancer in humans.
  • Experimental medicines can be started sooner than in humans, if the owners agree. And results are known sooner because cancers grow more rapidly in dogs.
  • Many owners are happy to get the newest experimental treatments for their beloved pets.
  • And researchers get important data that might help treat cancers in humans.
  • The dogs that are treated with experimental drugs are often helped and able to live a longer and healthier life with their human families.
  • Unlike many animal trials, no dogs have cancer purposely implanted to enable studies. These dogs are treated after they naturally contract cancer.

Canine trials have focused on bone cancer, lymphoma, and melanoma—common cancers in humans. These trials have the potential to help both dogs and humans—a win-win if there ever was one.

To put a smile on your face see Larry's latest cartoon

(c) 2012 Tom Beer and Larry Axmaker

1 comment:

  1. These points mentioned here are great. People will come to know about. Thanks for sharing.