Getting to Understand Devil Facial Tumor Disease

by Savitha C Muppala on  July 23, 2011 at 11:54 PM Research News   - G J E 4
Researchers are working hard to understand Devil Facial Tumor Disease, a fatal condition in Tasmanian Devils.This is a rare but highly contagious facial tumour which can spread between the devils through biting.
 Getting to Understand Devil Facial Tumor Disease
Getting to Understand Devil Facial Tumor Disease

Their quest led them to perform skin grafts from several devils to ascertain whether low-genetic diversity in the species made them prone to cancer.  

During this exercise, researchers found that Devils' immune system rejected the skin grafts, showing that the genetic diversity was much more than what was expected.

"We know that the devil has a lack of genetic diversity, so our hypothesis was that there's insufficient diversity for devils to recognize foreign tissue. So if that lack of diversity was really severe you would not get rejection of the graft. The graft was rejected nicely showing that devils do have enough diversity to recognize foreign tissue," researchers said.

Source: Medindia

Post your Comments

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
User Avatar
* Your comment can be maximum of 2500 characters
Notify me when reply is posted I agree to the terms and conditions

You May Also Like