Nature Hot Topic

Transmissible cancers in marine species

Transmissible neoplasia is rare, but it has been found to occur in the Tasmanian devil (a marsupial), dogs, and recently in soft-shell clams. Here Stephen Goff and colleagues identify three marine bivalve species — cockles, mussels and shell clams — that also exhibit disseminated neoplasia. In shell clams, the cancer lineages are transmitted from a closely related species. The findings suggest that transmissible neoplasia is more common than was previously thought, and that cross-species transmission of cancer can occur, albeit rarely.

Related articles

Recent Hot Topics

Sign up for Nature Research e-alerts to get the lastest research in your inbox every week.

PrivacyMark System