Dog Models of Naturally Occurring Cancer
Format of Original
Trends in Molecular Medicine
Original Item ID
Studies using dogs provide an ideal solution to the gap in animal models for natural disease and translational medicine. This is evidenced by approximately 400 inherited disorders being characterized in domesticated dogs, most of which are relevant to humans. There are several hundred isolated populations of dogs (breeds) and each has a vastly reduced genetic variation compared with humans; this simplifies disease mapping and pharmacogenomics. Dogs age five- to eight-fold faster than do humans, share environments with their owners, are usually kept until old age and receive a high level of health care. Farseeing investigators recognized this potential and, over the past decade, have developed the necessary tools and infrastructure to utilize this powerful model of human disease, including the sequencing of the dog genome in 2005. Here, we review the nascent convergence of genetic and translational canine models of spontaneous disease, focusing on cancer.