Canine lymphoma is one of the most prolific cancers in the dog population. It accounts for more than 20% of all cancers and in certain high risk breeds this figure could be considerably higher. The screen developed by PetScreen is inexpensive, minimally invasive and relies on a small blood sample which can be taken by any vet, and then shipped directly to their laboratories in Nottingham, England from anywhere in the world using a global logistics partnership with FedEx.
PetScreen has developed the screen based on proteomic technology which has emerged from the sequencing of both the human and canine genomes. It facilitates regular, routine screening which enables cancer to be detected at a much earlier stage when, as in humans, treatment has the best chance of success. The problems associated with the late detection of cancer are well understood, and whilst proteomic screening is at a comparatively early stage in humans, an ovarian cancer screen is expected to be announced in the United States next year… the work that PetScreen is undertaking in the canine world will have a significant impact for both four and two legs.
Where available, the screen should be regarded as part of an overall wellness program for all breeds and provides owners with peace of mind … particularly high risk breeds, which include both golden retrievers, boxers, rottweilers, German shepherds, spaniels and many breeds of mountain dogs. Ideally a mature pup should be screened at twelve months and then annually. For high risk breeds and dogs from middle age onwards, bi-annual screening should be considered, since six months in the life of a dog is equivalent to approximately three years in human terms. Any dog which may have been treated for lymphoma should be screened bi-annually to monitor for recurrence, according to PetScreen.
The company’s Chairman Professor Graeme Radcliffe, had lost three young dogs to cancer over a five year period. His determination to do something positive led to a chance meeting with Chief Executive, Dr Kevin Slater, an entrepreneurial bioscientist who had worked on human biomarker programs. The meeting led to the partnership which founded Petscreen.