Veterinarian Nicola Mason of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine has been working on a vaccine to treat canine osteosarcoma, an aggressive cancer that attacks the bones of large-breed dogs. Treatment typically involves amputation with or without chemotherapy. The vaccine uses bacteria that have been modified to express a growth factor receptor common to cancer cells, stimulating the dogs' own immune systems to attack tumor cells. Dr. Mason has treated 12 dogs, and preliminary results have been encouraging, with several dogs cancer-free more than 500 days after diagnosis.
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