A new research study has identified the oldest cancer in world, which developed over 11,000 years ago, and it was in a solitary Alaskan husky canine type of dog. The cancer, which has been named canine transmissible venereal tumor syndrome, lingers in the modern population of dogs this day and time. It is only the third known cancer known to be contagious in the world. It passes from one dog to another when they mate, or when they lick another diseased dog. The worry scientists has is that humans might end up catching it.
According to the research printed in the journal Science, the cancer’s genome has around two million different mutations. Scientists sequenced one specific mutation from cancer cells that were removed from two sick dogs, an American cocker spaniel and an Australian Aboriginal dog. The findings showed that the cancer originated 11,370 years ago in a prehistoric breed of dog that had a straight, short fur coat which was either black or brown. The dog’s gender was unable to be determined, but it was believed that it was most likely an inbred canine.
The genome of such a long living significant form of cancer has proven that, allowing for the right set of circumstances, cancers are able to continue surviving for over 10,000 years even though there is a buildup of millions of mutations, stated Dr. Elizabeth Murchison, who is a genetics researcher at both the Wellcome Sanger Institute and also the University of Cambridge which is located in England. Murchison stated that the researchers in the study had no clue as to why this certain canine was able to give rise to a cancer that was actually transmissible. The doctor added that it was enthralling to be able to look back through time and rebuild the identity of this prehistoric dog whose genome is still alive and existing in today’s world in the cells of a terrible thing like the cancer that it happened to pawn.
The statistic that the cancer happened to come from a dog that was inbred could possibly shed some information on how the illness has managed to stay around this long. Interbreeding allows for peculiar genetic transmutations to form and may have enabled the cancer to be able to escape from the immune system of its host, stated the study’s authors wrote. Murchison stated that this cancer was considered to be a type of super cancer, it was so resilient. It is also a particularly uncommon cancer that started to move all over the world in the last 1500 years. The newest findings may aid scientists in getting a better picture of understanding various types of transmittable cancers.
The genome of the infectious dog cancer should aid scientists to comprehend the processes which let cancers to become contagious, stated Professor Sir Mike Stratton, who is the senior author of the study. Although transmissible cancers are extremely rare, scientists need to start becoming prepared in case such a disease was to show up in human begins or other types of animals. Additionally, by learning about the evolution of this prehistoric cancer, it can help researchers understand the factors that drive cancer evolution. The research study has identified the oldest cancer in world.
By Kimberly Ruble