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Two decades of the impact of Tasmanian Devil Facial Tumour Disease (DFTD)

Woods, GM ORCID: 0000-0001-8421-7917, Fox, S, Flies, A ORCID: 0000-0002-4550-1859, Tovar, CD ORCID: 0000-0001-9555-2489, Jones, M ORCID: 0000-0001-7558-9022, Hamede, R ORCID: 0000-0003-1526-225X, Pemberton, D, Lyons, AB ORCID: 0000-0002-8508-5853 and Bettiol, S ORCID: 0000-0002-4355-4498 2018 , 'Two decades of the impact of Tasmanian Devil Facial Tumour Disease (DFTD)' , Integrative and Comparative Biology , doi: 10.1093/icb/icy118.

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Abstract

The Tasmanian Devil, a marsupial carnivore, has been restricted to the island stateof Tasmania since its extinction on the Australian mainland about three thousandyears ago. In the past two decades, this species has experienced severe populationdecline due to the emergence of devil facial tumour disease (DFTD), a transmissiblecancer. During these twenty years, scientists have puzzled over the immunologicaland evolutionary responses by the Tasmanian devil to this transmissible cancer.Targeted strategies in population management and disease control have beendeveloped as well as comparative processes to identify variation in tumor and hostgenetics. A multi-disciplinary approach with multi-institutional teams has producedconsiderable advances over the last decade. This has led to a greaterunderstanding of the molecular pathogenesis and genomic classification of thiscancer. New and promising developments in the Tasmanian devil’s story includeevidence that most immunized, and some wild devils, can produce an immuneresponse to DFTD. Furthermore, epidemiology combined with genomic studiessuggest a rapid evolution to the disease and that DFTD will become an endemicdisease. Since 1998 there have been more than 350 publications, distributed over 37Web of Science categories. A unique endemic island species has become aninternational curiosity that is in the spotlight of integrative and comparative biologyresearch.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Woods, GM and Fox, S and Flies, A and Tovar, CD and Jones, M and Hamede, R and Pemberton, D and Lyons, AB and Bettiol, S
Keywords: Tasmanian Devil, DFTD, cancer, epidemiology?
Journal or Publication Title: Integrative and Comparative Biology
Publisher: Soc Integrative Comparative Biology
ISSN: 1540-7063
DOI / ID Number: 10.1093/icb/icy118
Copyright Information:

Copyright The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology.

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