Veterinary and human researchers collaborate on non-Hodgkin's lymphoma study

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Raleigh, N.C. -- Researchers from North Carolina State University's College of Veterinary Medicine and the University of North Carolina's Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center have teamed up to pinpoint the cause of and improve treatments for non-Hodgkin lymphoma in canines and humans.

Raleigh, N.C.

-- Researchers from North Carolina State University's College of Veterinary Medicine and the University of North Carolina's Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center have teamed up to pinpoint the cause of and improve treatments for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in canines and humans.

Currently, the team is recruiting dogs diagnosed with lymphoma to collect tissue samples for study. Labs from both institutions then will study tissue samples from canine and human patients, with the hope of creating a genomic "profile" of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma that would give oncologists and veterinarians greater insight into the disease's biology, and improve their ability to diagnose the illness early.

"Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma ranks fifth in cancer deaths among human patients, and the mortality rate for dogs is even higher," says Dr. Steven Suter, professor of clinical science at North Carolina State. "By combining the strengths of our programs, we expect to enhance our understanding of the disease and speed improved treatments for people and pets. This is another example of 'One Health.'"

One aspect of the disease, which is biologically similar in humans and dogs is that it is much easier to narrow down problematic areas in a dog's genome because the genetic variation among dogs of the same breed is much lower than genetic variation in humans.

Suter and Dr. Matthew Breen, professor of genomics, along with statistics professor Dr. Alison Motsinger-Reif and Dr. Dahlia Nielsen, research assistant professor of genetics, lead the North Carolina State team.

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