About 6 million dogs are diagnosed with cancer each year, and more than half of dogs older than 10 years will develop cancers such as osteosarcoma, lymphoma, or melanoma (http://1.usa.gov/1OAxijB). But the heartbreaking diagnosis for dog owners is a treasure trove of potential data for oncology researchers. In clinical trials at academic research centers across the country, veterinarians and physicians are studying how pet dogs respond to cancer therapies and analyzing the genetic makeup of these tumors. Although medicine and veterinary medicine, for the most part, have been viewed as 2 different worlds, with little exchange of information between the two, that is beginning to change.
Jacob JA. Researchers Turn to Canine Clinical Trials to Advance Cancer Therapies. JAMA. 2016;315(15):1550-1552. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.0082