Cancer Clues from Pet Dogs

From Scientific American:

Dog_2 Studies of pet dogs with cancer can offer unique help in the fight against human malignancies while also improving care for man’s best friend. Imagine a 60-year-old man recuperating at home after prostate cancer surgery, drawing comfort from the aged golden retriever beside him. This man might know that a few years ago the director of the National Cancer Institute issued a challenge to cancer re­searchers, urging them to find ways to “eliminate the suffering and death caused by cancer by 2015.” What he probably does not realize, though, is that the pet at his side could be an important player in that effort.

Picture: Dogs and humans often fall ill with the same kinds of cancers. Scientists contend that the similarities between these tumors, including genetic resemblances, can be instructive. (The back­ground represents the DNA sequence from a tissue sample.)

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