Comparative Oncology Helps Humans & Horses

The Ohio State University’s Comparative Oncology Signature Research Program pairs oncologists and veterinarians with the goal of speeding up research and treatments. Its first equine patient started treatment earlier this month.

When Bob, a beloved family pony, began experiencing breathing problems in the summer of 2017, his concerned owners took him to The Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center Galbreath Equine Center. There, the veterinary team discovered that Bob had chronic lymphocytic leukemia, a type of blood cancer that’s common in humans but rare in horses. Unfortunately, Bob’s first treatment attempts were unsuccessful.

Luckily for Bob, The Ohio State University is home not only to the equine veterinary program but the Comparative Oncology Signature Research Program as well. This program connects oncologists who treat specific kinds of cancer with veterinarians treating the same kinds with animal patients; the program has been mostly focused on canine cancer patients and Bob represents the first equine to receive treatment. The goal of comparative oncology is to help speed up research for cancer treatments; typically, clinical trials lack a close comparative testing model for drug discoveries.

This month, Bob started treatment with the drug ibrutinib, which has been effective for humans who have chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

Human Treatment Helping Pony with Leukemia

Buckeyes are collaborating on cancer care to help a pony with leukemia. Learn more about this effort, which pairs experts from The James with vets from The Ohio State University:

Posted by OSUCCC-James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute on Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Bob probably has no idea that the treatment that may save his life could also help further research into cancer treatment that could help thousands of patients, both equine and human. The Ohio State University’s Comparative Oncology Signature Research Program is certainly doing good work for both!

To learn more about The Ohio State University’s Comprehensive Cancer Center, please view the website.

Go riding.

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